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Ford drives toward autonomous future with next-gen driver assist technologies

The new technologies will enable safer and more efficient driving.

By Hannah Williams

Ford continues expanding its technologies with a range of next-generation features added to its vehicles. The technologies are to enable stress-free parking, improve collision avoidance, detect objects in the road and also prevent wrong-way driving.

The journey to an autonomous future begins with an innovative personal transportation system, which is designed to fit into the trunk. Carr-E, which is a segway-vehicle released by Ford this year, can transport people or objects of up to 260 pounds, has a range of 14 miles and a top speed of 11 mph.


Kilan Vas, Ford systems engineer, said: “We really need to reinvent the wheel, to find new approaches to mobility. When developing Carr-E, I was inspired by Ford’s expansion into both an auto and a mobility company, but I’m also aware of how rapidly cities are growing and how getting around urban areas will become more complicated.”

As part of Ford’s driver assist technologies, a cross-traffic alert with braking technology is currently in development at Ford, designed to help reduce parking stress by detecting people and objects about to pass behind the vehicle, providing a warning to the driver to the result to automatic braking if the driver does not respond.

Enhanced active park assist is an addition to parallel or perpendicular park at the push of a button.

Ford recently announced its deal with Blackberry, who will provide software for its connected cars.

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Scott Lindstrom, Manager, Driver-assist and active safety at Ford said: “Driver-assist technologies help us all be better drivers because they enhance our ability to see and sense the road around us.”

ford-innovation-labs-testing-wearable-and-car-136403302386410401-160112101849The company already offers a wide range of driver-assist technologies, and with the acceleration in innovation, it is expected to top the 2015 record of over 6,000.

It begun testing connected cars in the UK last month.

Other features in development at Ford of Europe’s Research and Innovation Centre in Aachen, Germany include systems that steer around vehicles to help avoid high-speed collisions and systems that can warn drivers from travelling the wrong way against traffic.

These are; Evasive steering assist, Wrong-way alert technology, Spot lighting technology, advanced front lighting system and Traffic jam assist.

The new technologies, which are expected to be available on Ford vehicles within the next two years, are part of the company’s commitment to triple its investment in developing driver-assist features.

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