This article was originally published on Fleet News.
Ford is introducing pothole detection technology to the new Focus, to mitigate the damage caused when striking potholes. The system is available as option, in conjunction with Ford’s Continuously Controlled Damping system. It uses sensors to detect potholes and then adjusts the suspension to limit how far the wheel can drop, effectively jumping over the hole.
Because the tyre and wheel do not fall as far, they do not strike the opposite side of the pothole as harshly on exit. The rear suspension can respond even faster than the front, with a signal from the front wheel providing a pre-warning to the rear wheel before it reaches the pothole. This all happens in a split second.
“Our engineers are always searching for the roughest roads to really test our suspension to the limit, but more and more we’re noticing that the rough roads are finding us,” said Guy Mathot, Ford Focus vehicle dynamics supervisor. “Potholes are a problem that isn’t going away anytime soon, but with our advanced suspension technology for all-new Focus, we’ve been able to reduce their impact.”