The blue oval brand is upgrading its BlueCruise self-driving technology to take on Tesla Autopilot and GM Super Cruise.
Ford‘s BlueCruise hands-free driving has already arrived for 15,000 drivers of 2021 F-150 and Mach-E vehicles thanks to a recent software update. Reportedly, 35,000 more updates are in process. Add in the new vehicles that already had BlueCruise equipped at the factory, and this means that about 66,500 Ford drivers can now use hands-free highway driving technology.
Formerly dubbed Active Drive Assist, this technology launched in 2021 as an available feature that allows for hands-free driving on prequalified sections of divided highways. These Hands-Free Blue Zones comprise 130,000 miles of North American roads, and a vehicle with this option uses blue lights on the digital instrument cluster to tell the driver when they are in a hands-free zone.
The BlueCruise technology builds on the Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop-and-Go and Lane Centering and Speed Sign Recognition. The vehicle then uses its driver-facing camera to make sure you’re keeping your eyes on the road.
This update caps off the first year of Ford Power-Up software updates, and it has allowed Ford to see how customers’ driving habits are changing and adapting. Just within the past month, Ford drivers doubled the use of their hands-free driving technology, jumping from 4.5 million miles to 10.6 million miles.
“We are rapidly increasing the number of digital vehicles on the road with new services that create ‘always-on’ customer relationships with great software experiences,” said Ford CEO Jim Farley. “BlueCruise is a great example as customers have driven more than 10 million miles hands-free in just one year since we launched the capability and delivered it with a Ford Power-Up software update.”
“Ford Power-Up technology is the gift that keeps giving. Ford BlueCruise software updates are a powerful example of this. One day you’re driving normally and the next hands-free,” said Farid Abdulhadi, program manager, Ford Power-Up Technology. “Ford is helping lead the mainstream adoption of advanced software update capability, similar to how smartphones changed the world of flip phones.”
You can check out the official launch video for Ford’s BlueCruise from last year, below, then let us know what you think of the self-driving AI’s upgrades in the comments section at the bottom of the page.
Introducing BlueCruise: Hands-Free Highway Driving
SOURCE | IMAGES: FORD.