Is Your Car Rated PG?

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The technology isn’t there yet, but in the next year or two the car that Mom and Dad plans to lend to you while you’re away at college may soon be rated PG — for Parental Guidance, that is. Thanks to a technological feature developed by the Ford Motor Company, all 2010 Ford Focus coupe models will MyKeyfeature MyKey, an innovative offering that will allow parents to control some of the features on the car.

Yes, the ultimate in nannyware is on its way as the technology will allow your parents to look over your shoulder even when you’re hundreds of miles away from home, at least figuratively. Specifically, MyKey will allow parents to limit your speed to 80 mph and control the volume on the car’s audio system in addition to providing other constraints that parents will love.

In addition, warnings to remind you to buckle up your seatbelt and to check your gas gauge are some of the other features planned for MyKey.  Yes, all of the little reminders you heard from your parents when they rode around with you while you learned to drive and more!

“Ford not only offers industry-leading crash protection and crash avoidance systems, we also are committed to developing new technologies such as MyKey that encourage safer driving behavior,” said Susan Cischke, Ford group vice president of Sustainability, Environment and Safety Engineering. “MyKey can help promote safer driving, particularly among teens, by encouraging seat belt use, limiting speed and reducing distractions.”

Ford developed MyKey as a response to surveys from parents who were asked about which feature they would like to see implemented with the system. A full three-quarters of parents liked the speed limiting feature, while 72% like the safety belt reminder which emits chimes for six seconds every minute for the first five minutes of driving. Of course, when young drivers were surveyed, Ford learned that 67% of them don’t like the feature, but that number drops to 36% if it also means that leads to greater driving privileges from parents.

“We’ve upgraded an existing, proven technology – the SecuriLock passive anti-theft system – with some simple software upgrades to develop a new unique feature that we believe will resonate with customers,” said Jim Buczkowski, director, Electrical and Electronic Systems Engineering – the same team that developed SYNC in partnership with Microsoft.  “We also developed MyKey’s functions in such a way to quickly spread it across multiple vehicle lines, giving us the ability to go mass market in the spirit of other Ford innovations such as safety belts, stability control and SYNC.”

Lest you think that your car won’t be effected by this technology, Ford promises to quickly expand MyKey across its entire line of Ford, Lincoln, and Mercury vehicles. And, where technology is embraced by one automaker and accepted by the driving public, you can expect that similar technology will be sold by other automakers soon thereafter.

MyKey may take some of the joy out of driving, but if it keeps young drivers safe and parents at peace, then you can expect that your parents will opt for this feature as well.

(Source: Ford Motor Company)


Adv. – If you’re shopping for an auto loan, you’ll want to compare offers and find the auto protection you need to ensure that your investment lasts for many years.

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Categories: Campus Cars