Ford reveal new technology aimed at easing parking stress 0

Ford has revealed plans for a whole new range of exciting new technologies to be fitted to its vehicles by 2018, amongst them a series of features aimed at making parallel parking easier.

Parallel parking is one of the most frequently cited bugbears for motorists. A quarter of UK traffic accidents happen in car parks, leading to a combined repairs bill of £716 million. Almost 50% of drivers said they would rather travel further from their destination then have to parallel park. In addition, 15% avoid parallel parking completely, and 75% get nervous when parking in front of other drivers.

Ford is currently working on a new active parking assistant, that takes control of steering, gear selection and forward and reverse movement, helping drivers to park simply at the press of a button.

The system uses a series of sensors that first identify a suitable parking space, then the vehicle’s parking assistant takes over and manoeuvres the car gently into it.

A rear wide-view camera operates in a similar way to the front wide view cameras fitted in the Edge, Galaxy and S-Max models.

It displays a wide-angle view from the rear of the vehicle on the in-car display, so when the car starts to reverse, it gives an extra view that allows drivers to see around corners as well as obstacles approaching from behind the vehicle.

“Parking is one of the most stressful experiences behind the wheel, and drivers struggling to find suitable parking spaces in urban areas can have a knock-on effect for traffic flow as well as stress-levels,” commented Dirk Gunia, the supervisor of driver assist electronics at Ford of Europe.

“Technologies like our enhanced active park assist will help drivers feel confident about parking in spaces they might otherwise have considered too small.”

“Drivers must remain alert and reactive when behind the wheel but driver assist technology can help,” added Edmund King OBE, president of the Automobile Association.

“There are great benefits in Ford developing new assist technologies which can aid the driver to avoid collisions, spot vulnerable road-users in blind spots or eradicate parking rage by making parking easier.”

Other technologies include an evasive steering assist system that could help drivers steer around stopped or slower vehicles to help avoid collisions.

At city and highway speeds, radar and a camera can detect slower-moving and stationary vehicles ahead, which then enable the system to give steering support to drivers to help avoid a vehicle if a collision is imminent.

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