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1min 45s read
March 12, 2018
Ford reliability comes from the automaker’s strict adherence to quality before, during and after production. Testing has become more and more scientific as Ford strives to ensure durability.
During development, the automaker constantly tests to make sure chemical formulations, metal alloys, and other elements are up to their task. It uses high-impact on-road testing as it seeks to ensure that engineering design can handle daily or rough use.
For the new Ford F-150 and F Series Super Duty, the automaker employed patented robotic durability testing. This uses a control module for steering, GPS to monitor navigation, and bell crank actuators to run the throttle and brake pedals. With the vehicle on a preprogrammed course, its activity is closely monitor by cameras.
While humans watch from their safe perch at computer screens, the Fords take abuse that the average vehicle may see in ten years of real on-road driving. The cars drive over curbs, rush over speed bumps, bounce through potholes and rattle over metal grates. Road surfaces aren’t smooth, forcing the car over rough gravel, cobblestones or broken concrete.
This testing, first utilized in 2013, has allowed Ford to develop new parts and systems faster. Design changes are made to improve the steering’s reaction time to the driver and to ensure the accuracy of the throttle and brake pedals each time they are pushed. The goal is to improve system performance and to improve component response.
To improve engine performance, Ford powertrains have been tuned and retuned with advanced technologies to achieve higher horsepower. A good example is the F-150 V6 which raised its horsepower to 290 without requiring more fuel. Ecoboost technology allows drivers to enjoy ample horsepower while reducing fuel inefficiencies.
Wind-tunnel testing helps Ford develop exteriors that are aerodynamic. The automaker’s use of high-strength aluminum shows a commitment to using the best material for the job without compromising on capability. Aluminum reduces weight and eliminates the threat of rust.