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Ford Unveils A Car That Parks Itself

Ford's Fully Assisted Parking Aid detects open parking spots, then auto-parks your car.

Ford unveiled its newest technology—self-parking cars—at a press event in Belgium today. The new Fully Assisted Parking Aid, which is not scheduled to be added to any cars as of yet, detects open parking spots while a car is driving at up to 18 mph. When open perpendicular, parallel, and diagonal spots are detected, the car uses sensors and parking-aid software to maneuver itself into the space. Drivers keep their hands on a button during the whole process which allows them to switch to manual takeover at any moment. Right now, for a host of reasons, Ford's product is only a demonstration and is not yet going to market.

As futuristic as it sounds, Ford isn't the only company experimenting with self-parking cars. Co.Exist recently featured Audi's experimental self-parking cars.

At the same Belgian press event, Ford also showed off its new Obstacle Avoidance technology, which "issues warnings if it detects slow-moving objects, stationary obstacles or pedestrians in the same lane ahead."

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  • Digiroa

    I don't think this is correct - my mercedes self parallel parks and has done so for years. Ford is late in the self-parking game. Not to mention Google's cars which have been on the road in California which drive, park, and change lanes, everything on their own.  

    I think the headline should read Ford FINALLY experimenting with self-parking cars, when others already have it on the market for sale.

  • Veyron

    The Lexus LS460 had the self parking feature available back in 2006. The concept isn't new... 

  • LeglessDog

    Now we just need cars that move themselves out of the left (fast) lane when they're at or below the speed limit and blocking traffic . . . . . . .

  • Cassandra Murray

    And get every car to blink in the correct direction BEFORE the driver swerves into my lane :)

  • Christopher Aw

    I have a Ford Focus that is supposed to parallel park and it hit another vehicle.  Sensors were clean and car parked in exact same spot day before and the other vehicles never moved.  Ford also did nothing about it when brought into two dealerships and contacting corporate.  I will not buy another Ford because of my experience with their technology and lack of customer support.  There are few companies that I resent more due to my recent experiences .

  • Alexisdp0088

    How did you get a vehicle like this when Ford has only been experimenting with this technology? For the record, Lexus did this about...7-8 years ago (hands-free parallel park between two towers of crystal glasses...remember that commercial?)

  • LeglessDog

     . . . . or you could just learn how to drive the car yourself and stop blaming the technology for not being 'perfect.'  Do you react the same way when you cut yourself shaving in the morning--blaming Gillette that their shaving technology didn't do it's job?

  • oz2

    um... right... the point is that the product did not perform as advertised or designed. 

  • perry-painting

    So do all of these self parking cars pay for the damage caused by the other driver that you pissed off by parking so close you need a can opener. Do these cars self heal the door dings from parking so close as well. Bet you get some really nice notes on your car!

  • Yepla

     an animation of a soon-to-be imaginary feature is not the same as unveiling something. This is the difference between an IDEA and a REALISATION :-).

  • Roni

    This was developed in the late 1970's. My father worked on it when he was at Raytheon. Just like the ship that when a torpedo hits it, it does not blow up. These have been out there for years, but not out in the public eye. 

  • steve

    Most public and private parking lots in the U.S. require head-on parking only. Why?  .  Rear bumpers are better able to absorb fender benders than front bumpers... AND people tend to pull away from their parking spaces faster when they are backed in.  Next time you are in a large parking area observe how fast cars travel, whether looking for a spot or exiting. Head-on parking makes sense.

  • Karen Achetu Okwu

    Since parking is not a problem,I hope to keep my car for  at least ten years.But I am sure other people can appreciate not having to park.New Information.