An active system for passive parking

Andrew Hopkins

In one of our New Year's Eve videos we showed you a couple of examples of how men (and women) really ought not to park their cars. Some of these were more reminiscent of a demolition derby.

To avoid such scenes being repeated in a street near you, Ford have come up with something very special. And in doing so, the auto giant has set itself up as a kind of self-styled parking guru – though perhaps the insurance companies won't find it so amusing if it means that they see a drop-off in trade...

New Ford models are to be fitted with an 'Active Park Assist' system, which will be a dream come true for everyone with a phobia of parking. A combination of sensors on the corners of the car plus the innovative 'Electric Power Assisted Steering' (EPAS) will assume control over the wheel from drivers already stressed by the hunt for a parking space and thereby minimise the number of dents in the paintwork. All the driver has to do is follow commands to engage forward or reverse gear and operate accelerator and brake pedals – so there is still hope for the insurance companies after all.