Cars Are Going To Automatically Drive Away If You Don’t Make Your Payments
Ford is working on patented technology for self-driving cars that could make repossessing vehicles with defaulted payments even easier.
In the world of automobiles, it appears we are getting one step closer to living in the future. In a recently published application, Ford is looking to patent new technology that could change the car game forever. According to The Drive, this patent titled “Systems and Methods to Respossess a Vehicle” could make it even easier for cars to be repossessed from their owners if they default on loans.
Along with everything else, car payments have been steadily climbing over the past few years. While loan defaults remain low, many are worried about what the rise in the cost of living could mean for the automobile industry. Trying to stay ahead of the possible trend, Ford is looking to patent technology that would make cars needing to be repossessed easier than ever before.
This new technology could allow cars to repossess themselves without the vehicle’s owner in sight. These cars could quite literally drive themselves to the repossession agency or to a location where a tow truck can pick them up. If getting the cars repossessed is not financially feasible, they may even be able to drive themselves to the junkyard.
Being able to drive away would only be for autonomous or semi-autonomous vehicles. However, even if your car isn’t self-driving, this new technology can still make your life harder in the event of a repossession. Ford noted in the patent application that the technology could be added to any one of their cars and could simply be used to disable the functionality of the vehicle if it gets repossessed.
While this new technology seems like something out of a science fiction movie, in reality, self-driving vehicles have been around for years and have steadily been making their way onto the roads. All a car would need to use this technology would be internet connectivity, something that is slowly becoming more common in vehicles. Even though this new feature could be added to make car repossession easier, it is unclear if Ford will actually be implementing it anytime soon.
To date, Ford is the only automaker that has released information on this type of car repossession technology. Just because they applied for a patent doesn’t mean it will be used in the years to come. It’s possible Ford is just trying to protect the technology.
While it is unclear what Ford’s intentions are, the application does detail a shocking amount of information about how this system could work. This means that even if it is not implemented in any of Ford’s cars, this technology could likely work to repossess vehicles. The patent even details how the system would slowly warn drivers about their default.
First, the car’s system would give several warnings to drivers, giving them a chance to make their payments before a formal repossession. If the owner still does not make payments, the vehicle would systematically disable features starting with ones that are a minor inconvenience not to have and slowly increasing to more important systems, like air conditioning. The car could even emit an unpleasant sound whenever the owner is in the vehicle.
Lastly, the cars would lock their drivers out and could even drive away and repossess themselves. Currently, this technology is unlikely to be implemented, but vehicle owners should keep an eye out for it in the future.