Ford has always been among the top leading brands when it comes to new automobile technology. Its latest addition just might make your next ride a little less bumpy.
The technology in question is the pothole detection system, previously exclusive to the Ford Expedition SUV and models in the automaker’s Lincoln subdivision. The system will now also be made available to the upcoming 2017 Fusion V-6.
Basically, the vehicle’s computer is able to detect a pothole in the middle of impact and immediately adjusts its shock absorbers to prevent the tires from dropping suddenly into the depression, which can cause premature damage.
Demonstrations were performed in which a Fusion with the technology drove over a pothole filled with ping-pong balls. Thanks to the system, not a single ball got crushed. The pothole detection system will come standard, according to company spokesman Aaron Miller.
The technology consists of 12 built-in sensors that can detect the lip of a pothole. It is also capable of adjusting the suspension dampers every two milliseconds – faster than a human can blink an eye. This enables the shocks to immediately stiffen to prevent the front wheels from falling completely into the hole.
The technology underwent rigorous testing at a test center in Belgium. Test vehicles drove through surfaces that simulated some of the worse potholes around the world that could instantly destroy your shocks if you drive through without slowing down.
The pothole detection system can prove to be a huge cost saver. According to AAA, potholes cause about $3 billion worth of damage every year nationwide.