Ford has announced that the 2017 Ford Fusion Sport will include a pothole detection system that will save drivers money by preventing pothole damage. This technology continuously tracks the road that is being driven on and anticipates potholes by gathering info from 12 high-resolution sensors. This system controls the springs and dampers in the suspension in order to avoid the tire from fully entering the pothole. This new Ford Fusion adjusts the dampers every 2 milliseconds to detect potholes and avoid any damage that could be dealt. The 2017 Ford Fusion Sport will become the first non-luxury, midsize sedan to offer this technology.
This article shows the new technologies that are becoming readily available in mass consumer cars and demonstrates how certain luxuries are becoming cheaper for companies. This technology will help to decrease the number of cars damaged and the amount of money that Americans spend every year on fixing pothole damage. AAA reports that every year Americans spend about $3 billion per year fixing damages from potholes, up to $300 per car. As this technology further develops it is likely that car companies will continue to not add a spare tire to newer cars.
However, the fact that newer cars may not have a spare tire isn’t necessarily a good thing. AAA has continuously requested that car companies continue to add a spare tire because of the damage that does occur to cars every year. A problem with this technology is that it does not account for other ways that cars tires may be damaged. Should a car go over a bump, it could still damage the tire, suspension, and rims of the car. Another aspect that Ford failed to report is at which speeds this technology will work. This tech is like the auto stop feature that new cars may offer but the car will only stop if it is going below 30 miles an hour. So the question remains to Ford, at which speeds will this system fail to do its job?
I personally believe that this technology will become increasingly useful to many consumers; especially as winter storms become worse and create more potholes on roads. As more cars continue to offer this technology, I think that Americans will continue to save money on fixing their cars every year, which may impact repair shops business. However, I do think that car companies should continue to add a spare tire, even if it's just an option.
Woodyard, Chris. "Ford Offers Pothole Protection in New Fusion Sport Sedan." USA Today. Gannett, 18 Feb. 2016. Web. 21 Feb. 2016. http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2016/02/18/ford-offers-pothole-protection-new-fusion-sport-sedan/80555396/?siteID=je6NUbpObpQ-C5SU2JKOM2w9DDfgoOoNAg
"Pothole Damage Costs U.S. Drivers $3 Billion Annually | AAA NewsRoom." AAA NewsRoom. N.p., 16 Feb. 2016. Web. 21 Feb. 2016. http://newsroom.aaa.com/2016/02/pothole-damage-costs-u-s-drivers-3-billion-annually/