Ford Motor Company has revealed technology developed to enable drivers to park at the touch of a button from inside or outside their car, and also a prototype system that uses automatic steering and braking to avoid collisions with vehicles or pedestrians.
Ford’s Research and Advanced Engineering organisation have harnessed advances made in the existing Ford technologies of Active Park Assist and Ford Powershift to deliver a test car equipped with a prototype Fully Assisted Parking Aid system. This next-generation parking technology controls steering, gear selection and forward and reverse motion to facilitate push-button parking that can be operated by remote control.
Ford has also revealed Obstacle Avoidance technology developed as part of a Ford-led and European-funded research project. Obstacle Avoidance-equipped vehicles will issue warnings first if it detects slow-moving objects, stationary obstacles or pedestrians in the same lane ahead. If the driver fails to steer or brake following those warnings the system will then automatically steer and brake to avoid a collision.
Barb Samardzich, Vice President Product Development, Ford of Europ commented, “The future for Ford means developing innovative products and technologies – including Fully Assisted Parking Aid and Obstacle Avoidance – that help deliver a safer, more convenient, more desirable, more personalised and greener driving and ownership experience. Ford is focussed on making sure the vehicles, technologies and features we develop better meet changing customer expectations and values.”
Forthcoming vehicles and features include:
- An S-MAX Concept features connectivity and ‘wellness’ technology including the Ford ECG Heart Rate Monitoring Seat
- The Ford Mondeo Vignale Concept provides a first glimpse of Ford’s vision for the upscale Vignale experience that is scheduled for launch in early 2015.
- Focus Electric, C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrid and Mondeo Hybrid cars that will, by the end of 2014, offer customers a full range of electrified vehicles
- Ford SYNC with AppLink. Spotify, TomTom navigation and Hotels.com are among voice-activated apps that will enable drivers to stay connected on the move, and keep their eyes on the road and their hands on the wheel.
Further Ford technologies on show at Ford Futures, as Ford celebrates the 100th anniversary of its moving assembly line, include:
- MyKey technology, which enables parents to place restrictions on younger drivers to promote safety
- Ford SYNC with Emergency Assistance, which can alert local emergency services operators to an accident in 26 languages, spoken in 40 European regions
- New techniques for the volume production of lightweight carbon fibre car components