Ford Wants To Use Tech To Help SA Customers Stay Safe On The Road

"A fully autonomous Ford will drive the streets of South Africa though this will be as dependent on regulatory, legal and insurance concerns which are still outstanding in the South African market."

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Ford sign on steering wheel close up.
Ford sign on steering wheel close up. Piotr Adamowicz / Shutterstock.com

The automotive industry is embracing modern technologies to enhance vehicle safety and help customers stay safe on the road.

The carmakers want to ensure that driver assist technologies available on many of today’s cars are designed to make our roads to be safer.

Detroit-based carmaker Ford is making a wide variety of driver assist technologies available to its South African customers, to help them drive more safely, to alert them to a potential collision and to make routine tasks easier.

In South Africa, Ford is already offering a suite of standard driver-assist technologies across a large number of nameplates.

Kuda Takura, Ford Credit SA’s brand, and marketing manager and smart services lead, said the aim of providing driver-assist technologies is to help people around the world more safely and confidently face congested roads – today and tomorrow.

The driver-assist technologies are known as “Ford Co-Pilote360”, which includes adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, blind spot monitors, pre-collision assist, and advanced auto parking.

Ford Wants To Use Tech To Help SA Customers Stay Safe On The Road
Ford Wants To Use Tech To Help SA Customers Stay Safe On The Road

“All of these technologies form part of the suite of driver-assisted technologies that are interdependent in delivering fully autonomous technologies that Ford is building towards,” said Takura.

He added that in the interim these technologies can be bought today on the following vehicles in South Africa: Ford Focus, Ford Kuga, Ford Everest and Ford Ranger.

Ford is in a process of democratizing these technologies by offering them to its customers as standard equipment.

“We continue to look at additional models we can roll out select technology to at accessible price point,” said Takura.

The objective is to make driving even safer and more enjoyable as the automotive industry moves into bringing fully autonomous technologies.

Earlier this year, Ford created Ford Autonomous Vehicles LLC, which will encompass all aspects of its self-driving vehicle business operations, to speed decision making and capitalize on market opportunities.

“Our target is to begin production of fully autonomous vehicles for commercial applications, such as mobility services like ride-hailing or package delivery in 2021,” said Takura.

“On the testing side, we will have more than 100 vehicles by end of this year, testing on public roads in Pittsburgh, Dearborn, Miami and the next city of our expansion.”

Ford Wants To Use Tech To Help SA Customers Stay Safe On The Road
Ford Wants To Use Tech To Help SA Customers Stay Safe On The Road

Ford Motor plans to spend $4 billion through 2023 in a newly created LLC

Takura said the process of bringing cars to market with a degree of autonomy already begun for Ford South Africa in 2013 when the then new Kuga was launched.

“We have built on this since adding and revising the capabilities of the technology and offering them across a greater range of nameplates/models.

“A fully autonomous Ford will drive the streets of South Africa though this will be as dependent on regulatory, legal and insurance concerns which are still outstanding in the South African market.”

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