Zipcar’s ex-CEO Joins Ford Autonomy Unit

Bill Hampton

Scott Griffith, who led car-sharing startup Zipcar between 2003 and 2013, has joined Ford Motor Co.’s Autonomous Vehicles LLC as head of product, marketing and operations.

Griffith, 60, will lead Ford Autonomous’ effort to bring its technologies and knowhow to market. Ford created the unit a year ago by integrating all its business activities related to robotic cars. The carmaker aims to commercialize autonomous vehicles for commercial use before the end of 2021.

As Zipcar’s CEO, Griffith led the company’s initial public offering in 2011 and directed its sale to car rental giant Avis Budget Group three years later for $500 million. Based in Boston, Zipcar is considered the world’s largest car-sharing service, operating heavily on college campuses.

Jim Farley, Ford’s president for new business, technology and strategy, says a major part of Griffith’s assignment will be to enhance the customer experience and achieve scalability as the carmaker rolls out its automated vehicles city by city.