- Ford EcoSport

Ford Announces Industry-First Initiatives For Specially-Abled Customers

The whole idea is to improve the vehicle ownership experience for customers with physical disabilities.

Do you know what day it was yesterday? Yes, it was a Tuesday. But what else? What does the world observe on December 3? No? Here’s a hint: the United Nations first promoted it in 1992. Still nothing? Well, the answer is the ‘International Day of Persons with Disabilities’. The idea behind it is simple: encourage an understanding of disability issues and extend support for the well-being of specially-abled people around the globe.

For persons with special physical needs, Ford India has made an announcement which should make their vehicle ownership experience a much calmer phase. It will protect the warranty on its vehicles retrofitted with driver assistance kits and owned by specially-abled customers. The only catch is that those kits must be from the list of add-ons approved by the Regional Transport Office. It, if you didn’t notice, is an industry-first initiative. As we are aware, any third-party changes made to the car can potentially leave the manufacturer’s warranty void.

Ford Aspire | Ford Freestyle | Ford Figo

Ford Aspire | Ford Freestyle | Ford Figo

Apart from that, the Indian arm of the American carmaker has additional benefits in store for disabled drivers. Those include “special” interest rates on auto loans, assistance in documentation and securing excise tax waiver, and insurance concession from relevant authorities. Put all those initiatives together, and it could amount to something valuable for customers.

Ford currently retails six models in India. As things stand, none of them complies with the stricter BS6 (Bharat Stage 6) norms which will come into effect from April 1, 2020. For the record, those emission norms are slightly more stringent than Euro 6 standards. In October this year, the blue oval announced that it would merge most of its Indian operations in a joint venture with Mahindra. Valued at Rs 1,925 crore (~$286 million), the JV is expected to go operational by mid-2020.

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