As part of Ford's Autonomous Driving Program.
The Ford Escape, which underwent a complete overhaul in 2020, is set to be the car of choice for the Blue Oval's autonomous driving testing program. The manufacturer has already set up an autonomous driving headquarters in Detroit, and we know that Ford is developing an autonomous shuttle service. Now comes the news that Ford will be using its compact crossover to test out the latest and greatest in self-driving tech. According to Ford Authority, the cars being used for the tests have been spotted with camouflaged roofs, which is an indication of the use of Lidar and other location-tracking devices.
Ford, which is currently working in collaboration with company Argo AI and Volkswagen has heavily invested in its AI program to the tune of over $2 billion dollars and aims to be one of the first companies to debut this tech on a large scale. Ford has committed a further $4 billion to the development of self-driving cars through to 2023. Unfortunately, the debut of the commercial side of Ford's autonomous vehicle services program was delayed until 2022 due to the lasting effects of the pandemic.
Ford's next CEO, Jim Farley has big plans for the advancement of Ford's technological capabilities and wishes to expand into various technology fields, including software, fleet management, and electric vehicle charging. Farley has also indicated that Ford was planning on using an all-new hybrid vehicle as a platform for its autonomous vehicle service program, rather than making use of an existing model, which makes us curious as to why it chose the Ford Escape to test its latest systems. Either way, it is clear that Ford is making some serious moves in the field of self-driving vehicles, and should soon be a market leader in this promising field.