Picture this: You're about to make a lane change when suddenly, a car zooms out of nowhere, almost clipping your bumper in the process. It's a familiar feeling for us, and sometimes, you end up getting hit by the speeding car. Well, Ford wants to do something about that.
Recently, Ford introduced what they call the Blind Spot Assist system, and they aim to cut down incidents like the one mentioned above from happening. Think of it then as the first reactive blind-spot warning system.
Currently, we have blind-spot monitoring systems standard on some vehicles. Those systems warn you of a hazard in your blind spot. However, it doesn't intervene when a car gets a little too close to you. With Blind Spot Assist, it gently tugs your steering wheel, veering you away from a possible collision. It should come in handy in the city and a lot more effective when you're out on the highway. At least, that's what Ford says. So, how does it work?
Radar sensors fitted to the vehicle constantly scans for what's going on behind. It also looks out for any road markings or obstacles at the front to determine a course of action. If the sensors feel that a car from behind is coming in too fast during a lane change, it steers the car away. According to Ford, this system works at speeds between 65 km/h to 200 km/h. They add that the system can intervene at a closing speed of up to approximately 30 km/h.
But aside from that, Ford is also introducing Intersection Assist. It works like automatic emergency braking but on a different level. Like the Blind Sport Assist system, it relies on radar sensors. Intersection Assist is most effective in cases where a driver is turning across the path of an oncoming vehicle. The system reacts by putting on the brakes if the driver of the other vehicle fails to yield.
For now, this system is available in the Kuga, also known as the Escape in other markets. However, we wouldn't be surprised if it makes its way to other Ford vehicles such as the Ranger and Everest. Given the number of safety assists on those two right now, there's a good chance that feature will be standard on the next-generation models, at least for the top-spec variants.