2017 Fusion to feature cruise control with stop-start

Michael Martinez
The Detroit News

When Ford Motor Co.’s updated 2017 Fusion mid-size sedan hits showrooms later this spring, it will be the first Blue Oval vehicle to feature adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go technology.

A number of automakers have been turning to adaptive cruise control in recent years to enhance driver safety.

The most advanced systems can stop and start in traffic jams without the driver having to touch a pedal. The most basic work only above a certain speed and cannot be used in traffic jams. Drivers typically can adjust the gap between cars according to their own comfort levels.

Ford’s system will be the former. Drivers can set cruise control speed and following distance from the vehicle ahead using dedicated steering wheel buttons. If the car has to stop for more than three seconds, the driver can tap the resume button or accelerator and the car returns to its preset speed.

The technology uses a combination of sensor and software, as well as an advanced radar-and-camera based system, which reads the road every 50 milliseconds.

Ford said the technology is helpful in high traffic, urban commutes.

“When testing this system, we traveled to cities like Chicago and Los Angeles, heading straight for the worst possible congestion,” Scott Lindstrom, Ford driver-assist technologies manager, said in a statement. “It was important for us to test this system under conditions the average driver encounters every workday.”

The 2017 Fusion will feature 20 driver-assist features, Ford said.

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