Ford Motor Company has filed a patent for a combined climbing ladder and recovery board, Ford Authority has learned.
The patent was filed on September 8th, 2020, published on March 10th, 2022, and assigned serial number 0073004.
The Ford Authority Take
This new Ford patent depicts a new take on the traditional climbing ladder and recovery board, which have long been popular accessories with off-roaders. Likely being considered for the Ford Bronco and/or Ford Bronco Sport (as these items are depicted on a Bronco-like vehicle in the patent drawings), these accessories have been combined into one piece that is designed specifically to mount in the vehicles’ cargo area neatly and without sacrificing too much in the way of space.
It’s a simple yet ingenious way to maximize the use of space in the rear of a vehicle like the Bronco while also combining two commonly carried items into one for the sake of packaging. Owners could presumably use the ladder to retrieve items mounted on the vehicle’s roof, roof rack, or cargo system, rather than having a permanently-mounted ladder on the side or rear of the vehicle, which is often the case.
Then, when the vehicle’s owner finds themselves stuck in the sand, mud, snow, or other types of slippery surfaces, they can use the ladder as a recovery board, no matter where they might be stranded. Both of these items are already available from a number of manufacturers including Ford, but combining them into one singular piece capable of doing multiple jobs seems like a fantastic idea that would certainly be popular among off-roaders, who need all the space for gear they can get.
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Funny that one of the oldest tricks in the book to self recover is use a ladder (often destructively) but I never thought of a “maxtrax” designed to be more like a ladder.
FWIW, gotreads are better than maxtrax and double as wheel leveler and a platform for easily installing snow chains … and they’re lighter and smaller, taking up less space than maxtrax without being on the roofrack and costing wind drag reductions in fuel efficiency.