Apparel Automotive Home Improvement Sports & Outdoors Tech
Struggleville tool deal website logo
Our site uses ads and affiliate links to generate revenue. If you make a purchase through one of our links we may earn an affiliate commission.

Tool News: Ford Files Patent For Self Repossessing Cars

Ford logo on steering wheel

Ford has recently filed a patent with the USPTO for a system that enables vehicle repossession. According to The Drive, one of the described methods enables autonomous vehicles to repossess themselves. The filing details the use of this system in semi-autonomous and autonomous vehicles. For vehicles equipped with semi-autonomous technology, the vehicle could move itself to a location where it can be easily towed. In the case of autonomous vehicles, the car could drive itself to the lending company or repo lot. If the vehicle is deemed not worth the cost of repossession, it could drive itself to the junkyard.

The patent describes other methods for repossessing a vehicle that doesn’t use autonomous technology. These methods include disabling certain vehicle functions such as the air-conditioning, cruise control, power seats, power windows, or radio. Another method involves playing irritating sounds through the stereo system, making the vehicle uncomfortable to drive. These methods could escalate to limiting access or the ability to drive the vehicle, essentially immobilizing it and locking the owner out.

It’s worth noting that the filing details steps that must be taken before an automated repossession occurs. A series of messages would be sent between the lender and the owner with past-due payments, and the owner would have an allotted amount of time to respond. The filing also includes language acknowledging events such as hospitalization or being out of the country. Those experiencing financial hardships might be able to work out a payment plan with their lender to avoid repo-related penalties.

Ford’s patent filing does not confirm that the company will introduce a self-repossessing system. Instead, it shows that Ford is at least considering the idea. While it’s possible that autonomous driving technology will become more integrated and common, it’s more likely that vehicles will be remotely repossessed by disabling features or through immobilization.

The most startling aspect of the patent filing is the notion that a vehicle could drive itself to the lender or the repo lot. It’s not hard to see how this could be perceived as creepy and controlling, even if it’s only used in the case of delinquent payments. However, it’s essential to remember that the only people in danger of having their cars repossessed are those who don’t pay their bills. Those who make their payments on time don’t have to worry about their cars being repossessed.

The filing suggests that the repo system could limit vehicle functions and lock the owner out, but it also acknowledges that the owner might be experiencing financial hardship. Ford’s repo system could provide early warnings and workarounds for people who own vehicles without autonomous technology. It’s not ideal, but it’s better than the vehicle driving itself away.

Overall, Ford’s patent filing is an interesting development in the world of autonomous driving technology. It highlights the potential for autonomous vehicles to become more integrated into our lives and the potential for vehicles to become more autonomous. However, it’s important to remember that autonomous vehicles could be used for more than just transportation. The filing shows that automakers are thinking about the future and the role that technology will play in it. It’s up to consumers to decide whether they’re comfortable with that role.

Leave a Reply

One thought on “Tool News: Ford Files Patent For Self Repossessing Cars