Electric cars might have been killed off a couple of times in the past, but the current wave appears to have hit at just the right time.

It's not all to do with concerns over global warming or energy prices though - it's the potential to be more connected to your car than ever before - via smartphone apps.

Ford has been previewing the latest generation of its MyFord Mobile app at the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), in Las Vegas.

The future of smartphone apps and electric cars with Ford is all about sharing the experience, and even making electric driving a game by comparing your statistics with other drivers.

Customers of vehicles like the Ford Focus Electric, or plug-in hybrids like the Ford C-MAX Energi and Ford Fusion Energi, will be able to participate in forums on the MyFord Mobile website. From there, says Ford, they can share, learn and teach smart driving.

They'll also be able to compare their driving with others, via leaderboards, unique achievements and social networking. Driving achievements, such as hitting range targets for example, can be instantly uploaded to sites like Twitter and Facebook. You can even earn achievements from helping others or from being an active forum member.

There's much more to come from MyFord Mobile, too. Value Charging by Microsoft lets drivers "set and forget" charging times, ensuring the car only charges at off-peak times, for example. Ford is also working with MapQuest to create a database of charging points.

Mobile connectivity systems like MyFord Mobile and Nissan's Carwings give owners of electric cars far more interactivity with their vehicles than anything that's come before - just one more good reason to go electric.


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