Towing is definitely not uncommon in Wyoming and Nebraska, whether it be for moving livestock and feed or taking a boat to the lake or snowmobiles to the mountains. Learning to tow can be a little tricky, due to having to use opposites of what you know. When reversing a vehicle, turning the steering wheel to the right, makes the vehicle go right. When backing up a trailer, however, turning the steering wheel to the right, will make the trailer go left.
There are now systems in place to aid with making trailering easier. First, there was backup cameras which it a lot easier to see hooking up your trailer to the hitch. Ram have ‘cargo cameras’ which allows you to see the bed of the truck and a 5th wheel hookup. But wouldn’t it just be a whole lot easier if when you turned left, the trailer went left? Well Ford have come up with a solution.
Ford have come up with the ‘Pro Trailer Backup Assist’
The system was named “Best of innovation’ awards honoree for the 2016 CES show. 1.
Turning the small knob on the center console helps you steer the trailer. Turn it to the right and the trailer goes right. this takes out that small equation in your head making it easier. Not only that but the truck will take over the steering wheel, so don’t even need to touch the wheel. Kind of similar to parking assist technology. You are still in control of the brake and gas, and whenever the steering is moved by the driver during operation, the system is shut off.
When backing up in a straight line, the Pro Tailer Assist will make minor adjustments to keep you in a straight line. Taking out the steering equation and being about to look at the camera whilst backing up will make it a lot less stressful for amateurs and for pros, you can get backed up even faster now!
Here is a short video of Jennifer Marzuk, from Ford Motor Company, giving us a demonstration on a computer-simulation challenge.
Lauren has been working in the automotive industry both in the U.K and in the U.S. for over 10 years. A car geek, photographer, big game chaser and bagpipe player, powered by coffee. Send your questions to: