Ford Co-Pilot360, the most advanced suite of standard driver-assist technologies among full-line brands, aims to help people around the world more safely and confidently face congested roads. It includes standard automatic emergency braking (AEB) with pedestrian detection, blind spot information system, lane keeping system, rear backup camera and auto high-beam lighting. Ford Co-Pilot360 will roll out across Ford’s new passenger cars, SUVs and trucks up to F-150 in North America, starting on the new 2019 Ford Edge and Edge ST this fall.
Ford Co-Pilot360 starts with standard AEB – called pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection – that can help drivers avoid collisions with other vehicles or pedestrians who might accidentally cross in front of the vehicle’s path. If a potential collision is detected, a warning flashes and an alert sounds, and if the driver’s response is not sufficient, the system can automatically apply the brakes to help minimize a frontal collision.
The technology addresses Ford research showing a growing trend of people worrying about hitting pedestrians – and will be standard on 91 percent of Ford vehicles in North America by 2020.
Blind spot information system, or BLIS, uses radar to identify a vehicle entering the blind spot and alerts the driver with an indicator light in the side-view mirror. Cross-traffic alert can warn drivers of traffic behind when slowly backing out of a parking spot or driveway.
Lane keeping system has three functions:
•The first can notify drivers through steering wheel vibration that they need to correct course when the system detects the vehicle drifting close to lane markings
•The second provides steering torque to steer back toward the center of the lane
•Third, a driver alert system, continuously monitors driving pattern using a forward-looking camera and provides visual and audio warnings when the system estimates the driver’s vigilance level to be less than that of an attentive driver
Commercial customers can also benefit from Ford’s expansion of driver-assist technologies. By 2020, E-Series, F-650 and F-750 and even the F59 chassis will come with available AEB, lane departure warning, driver alert system and more.
A National Transportation Safety Board study shows having technologies such as AEB can help prevent and mitigate rear-end crashes, which can help customers lower their cost of ownership.
Next year, the company plans to debut in North America and Asia Pacific AEB for when drivers are in reverse. Ford is also is investing $500 million the next five years to continue developing new driver-assist and safety technologies. Key areas of focus will be simplifying the technologies so they work as people expect – especially as driving controls become more automated.