Ford knows that driving high-sided vehicles during storms and strong gusting winds can be stressful, which is why it has come up with a new technology.
Available on the Transit and Transit Custom, fitted with the EcoBlue diesel engine, at no additional cost, it helps drivers keep their vehicles in lane when their van is hit by a sudden crosswind or turbulence, and was baptized the ‘Side Wind Stabilization’.
It’s an advanced feature that was developed in-house by the Blue Oval’s engineers and works by having the commercial vehicle’s brakes applied on one side, to reduce the effect of side winds, courtesy of a system that monitors stability sensors more than 100 times/second, at speeds over 50 mph (80 km/h). It can automatically engage the braking on one side within less than 200 milliseconds, which equals to the time needed for a sprinter athlete to react to the starting pistol, Ford says.
“No-one likes that feeling when your vehicle gets caught by a wind gust, or you are passing close to a fast-moving truck. This new technology will help make driving less stressful for Transit drivers, particularly on those dark and stormy winter nights“, said the company’s Europe chassis controls supervisor, Marc Suermann.
Ford have already tested the new system at a special track, where six powerful fans were brought to generate crosswinds of up to 50 mph (80 km/h). Additionally, the automaker also evaluated the technology on public roads, before making it available.