Last week I had pleasure of visiting a part of our American History, I went to Detroit Michigan, home of the Ford Motor Company. I felt very patriotic after I watched The Rouge Factory’s history and seeing just how far this family owned company has come into the 21st century. I was there to be apart of Ford’s Safety Driving School and the launch of Curve Control. (I had to wonder if they heard about my lead foot and recent parking violations?)
I started my day touring the Rouge Factory and watching the New F-150 Trucks being built. The factory was extremly clean and organized, it even smelt good..? Not sure what I was picturing but this assembly line looks to be perfected. We saw seatbelts being installed, windshields, steering wheels and those very important cup holders. And in case you were wondering like I was, it takes about 40 hours to bulid one vehicle.
Ford is also dedicated to sustainability and has the largest living roof in the world. This living roof allows for clearer storm water, cooler suroundings, cleaner air quality and is a habitat for birds, butterflies and insects. You can read more about Ford’s commitment to being Eco-Savvy and their Top 10 Green Initiatives here.
The most important part of this Program was Safety and to demonstrate one of Ford’s newest safety features Curve Control. I was put inside the New 2011 Ford Explorer with a helmet and taken down the Ford test track going 55 mph around a curve.
- Curve Control is designed to help drivers maintain control of their vehicle when taking a curve too quickly, a situation found to contribute to approximately 50,000 crashes on curves each year in the U.S. alone
- Curve Control senses when a vehicle is entering a curve too quickly, and can apply four-wheel smart braking to reduce vehicle speed by up to 10 mph in approximately one second and help drivers follow their intended path
Another interesting safety feature are the first ever Inflatable Seatbelts. These were developed for the safety of children and older passengers (grandma & grandpa) in the back seat. I thought these were pretty impressive, the seat belt deploys airbags right against the persons chest to help prevent neck, chest, and head injuries from a crash.
Yes, we got to meet the Test Drive Dummies, although they didn’t have mush to say. I was also able to get inside a virtual world and drive a car down a virtual track while they observed my driving and reaction times.
Another big part of our day was spent learning about the proper installation of Car Seats, which about 80% are installed incorrectly! We we’re quizzed and sadly we got many of the questions wrong. Car Seats have an expiration date…who knew? I was shocked by how little I knew about installing a car seat. I naively left that to my husband and just assumed it was easy and he installed them properly. I also realized we put our son in a booster seat way too early. You can find a Car Seat Safety inspection location in your area by going to The National Highway Traffic Safety Adinistration (NHTSA) website and simply put in your state and zipcode.
I always thought of Ford as just a truck Company, and a brand for my Dad. After visiting Detroit Michigan and gaining more insight to the company, the history and the latest innovations I can honestly say I look at Ford a little differently now. Ford is clearly pretty Savvy when it comes to Family, Safety, Technology and helping to keep our planet green for future families to come. So the only question I have is: Can Ford be Sassy? Over the next two weeks I’ll be driving the New Ford Flex and posting about my driving experience and honest opinions and I hope you’ll come along for the ride!
What do you think about the New Ford Flex?
Do you think it looks Sassy or Silly?
Have you ever owned a Ford?
Disclosure: I will be given the Ford Flex to Test drive for two weeks. That is all, I am not required to do anything other than test drive the vehicle.
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