Plug-in hybrids, once seen as an affordable, practical and long-range capable stepping-stone from traditionally powered cars to pricey range-anxiety afflicted electric ones, have run foul of green groups trashing their environmental qualities, but “geofencing” technology might restore their place in the race.
“Geofencing” can adapt technology to local conditions and is being offered by Ford Europe to improve the green credentials of its Transit van and Tourneo people mover plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV). BMW is also developing the technology. Geofencing can force PHEVs to switch to battery power in an inner-city clean air zone, or passing a school or hospital. Geofencing can make sure company car PHEV drivers not paying for their own gasoline or diesel make full use of the battery by keeping it charged as often as possible.