Who Is Doug Field, Ford’s New Tech Head Who Once Led Tesla Model 3 Development and Worked on Apple’s Secret EV Project?
Like many automakers, Ford has gotten serious about its EV roadmap. The Ford F-150 Lightning will be one of the first electric pickups, and the Mustang Mach-E is already out. Ford is focusing on an electric e-Transit van for delivery and commercial transportation fleets as well.
This electrification means that Ford seeks to bring new experts onto the so-called “Blue Oval Intelligence” team. One of these individuals is Doug Field, according to Business Insider. Who is Doug Field, and what makes him so qualified to help Ford develop more EVs?
Where did Ford find Doug Field?
According to his LinkedIn page, Doug Field has received master’s degrees in management science and mechanical engineering. His work history begins as one of the first employees at Segway, as VP of design and engineering.
Field was the Vice President of Apple’s Special Projects group for three years before Ford. He was also the VP of both Apple product design and Mac hardware engineering during his tenure at the company from 2008 to 2013. Between this, he worked at Tesla as a Vice President in both VP engineering and vehicle programs.
At Ford, Field is the chief officer of advanced technology and embedded systems, both essential aspects of Blue Oval Intelligence. According to Freep, Field was lured away from Apple because he shared many principles with Ford. He says it’s a privilege to work for the automaker and help it develop world-changing products that aid and delight consumers. Ford CEO Jim Farley also embraced Field’s involvement, citing his “talent and commitment to innovation.”
Doug Field’s involvement with Apple and Tesla
Even at Apple, Field was lending his knowledge toward the development of new EVs. He was one of the heads of Project Titan, Apple’s electric car initiative. The so-called “Apple Car” has had a tumultuous history between frequent leadership changes, delays, and manufacturing issues. As it stands, we probably won’t see the fruits of the project’s labor until at least 2024.
That will make it 10 years since Project Titan was started in 2014. A professional like Field leading the team could likely set the project back even more. He was replaced by Kevin Lynch, who was the leading developer of the Apple Watch. He will reportedly work on the car’s autonomous sensors and lead hardware engineering, according to Macrumors.
At Tesla, Field was one of the leading developers for the Tesla Model 3. Upon its release, the Model 3 had a standard range of 220 miles and an extended range of 310 miles. It was still just as much of a dynamic performer as today, reaching 60 mph in 3.5 seconds.
What is Blue Oval Intelligence?
In a Ford press release, the service is described as a cloud-based platform to refine software inside Ford and Lincoln cars. That includes new safety feature updates, as well as over-the-air upgrades to the infotainment system. EV customers can enjoy a few extra benefits, such as the Blue Oval Charging network.
Ford says this charging infrastructure is the largest in North America, with 19,500 stations in both rural and urban areas. Many of these chargers can be used by Ford EV drivers at no charge. The automaker is also launching Ford Pro vehicle services, a low-cost program geared toward EV charging and technology for fleets.
Ford also encourages customers to make the switch to electric for federal, state, and utility incentives. The Ford Mustang Mach-e, attracting 70% of new Ford buyers, has 35% lower maintenance costs than gas-combustion cars. We can expect to see more innovative EV technology and possibly new models with Doug Field on the team.