Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Ford's Electric Power-assisted Steering

What is Electric Power-assisted steering (EPAS) and how does it work?

• EPAS helps deliver improved fuel economy, great maneuverability and responsive handling
• Because EPAS uses an electric motor instead of a hydraulic pump, its control can be precisely programmed to enable technologies that help steering control (Pull-Drift Compensation, Active Nibble Control(1)) or provide steering during parallel parking (active park assist)

• While on a test-drive, demonstrate how EPAS is a sophisticated electric, speed-sensitive steering-assist system:
– Offers light, responsive steering at low speeds
– At higher speeds, EPAS delivers less steering assist for more confident control
• Explain that EPAS offers Pull-Drift Compensation to help reduce constant pulls or drifts from crowned roads and crosswinds to improve overall steering feel, and Active Nibble Control(1) to help smooth out minor tire vibrations
• Demonstrate that the system is continually “learning” and adapting to steering conditions, and compensates for changes that can cause the vehicle to pull left or right:
– Assists the steering effort to help the driver maintain a straighter path
– Helps driver avoid unwanted drifts and pulls
• Show how EPAS reduces steering effort required when driving on crowned or pebbled roads or in heavy side winds

• EPAS can increase fuel economy because the electric motor operates only when steering assistance is required, which is a more efficient way of managing energy than traditional hydraulic systems, which run continuously
• EPAS constantly measures steering input, adapts to changing road conditions and helps compensate for slight directional shifts caused by factors such as crowned roads and strong, steady crosswinds, and also helps smooth out minor tire vibrations

(1) Available on 2011 Fiesta, 2012 Mustang, 2011 F-150.

Available on:
2013 Fiesta
2013 Focus
2013 Mustang
2013 Fusion
2013 Fusion Hybrid
2013 Taurus
2013 Flex
2013 Escape
2013 Explorer
• 2012 Fiesta
• 2012 Focus
• 2012 Focus Electric
• 2012 Mustang
• 2012 Shelby GT500
• 2012 Fusion
• 2012 Fusion Hybrid
• 2012 Taurus
• 2012 Flex (with EcoBoost)
• 2012 F-150