New Ford Focus to include pothole detection tech

New Ford Focus to include pothole detection tech

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Ford will implement pothole detecting tech in its new Focus model after it was revealed earlier this year that the government would invest £100 million to fix dangerous roads across the country.

The so called “pothole epidemic” reached fever pitch after the ‘Beast from the East’ wreaked havoc during Spring. Insurance claims soared by 171% during the first months of the year and insurers had to fork out more than £4 million during that time. The government’s commitment will also fall well short of what is required to repair UK roads.

With this in mind, Ford says it will implement a new system in the fourth generation Focus to reduce potential damage to vehicles when it runs over a pothole. It will make use of 12 high resolution sensors that will identify potholes before a motorist drivers over them, and make damper adjustments to reduce the severity of the impact.

“Our engineers are always searching for the roughest roads to really test our suspension to the limit, but more and more we’re noticing that the rough roads are finding us,” vehicle dynamics supervisor for the new Focus, Guy Mathot said. “Potholes are a problem that isn’t going away any time soon but, with our advanced suspension technology for the all-new Focus, we’ve been able to reduce their impact.”

Ford says the system works better at the rear of the car as this area will have more time to make adjustments so the damper is tense enough to mitigate damage when running over a pothole. The tech actually made its debut in the US in 2017 and will now make its way into UK models of the Focus when they go on sale later this year.

Moving forward, any Ford model with continuously controlled damping will make use of the tech, which will be good news for insurers, who will be hopeful that other manufacturers implement similar measures to reduce the amount of pothole incidents.

The pothole epidemic highlights the importance of getting the best motor trade insurance or driving school insurance for anybody working the motor trade industry. Driving school owners rely on their vehicles to support their livelihoods and potholes and other dangerous stretches of road can put cause damage, as well as endanger learners and other people riding in cars.

“The pothole epidemic has become nothing short of a national disgrace,” AA’s director of insurance, Janet Connor said last month. “Drivers are hitting potholes and ruining their suspension, steering, the underbody of the car, breaking axles and occasionally being knocked off course and hitting other vehicles, kerbs or lampposts. This year we are seeing a growing number of pothole claims described as ‘car severely damaged and undrivable’ which didn’t happen at all last year.”

In other news, a fifth of motorists admit to having taken penalty points for a close friend or member of the family in order to protect the real offender. Men are more likely to have done so then women and half of those that have taken the hit said they did it for a partner.

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