Ford Motor Company has filed a patent for an updated tank turn feature, Ford Authority has learned.
The patent was filed on February 23rd, 2023, published on June 29th, 2023, and assigned serial number 0202483.
The Ford Authority Take
Though Rivian canceled its planned tank turn feature – which gets its name from the way military tanks are able to turn in extremely tight spaces by rotating treads in different directions – earlier this month for a variety of concerns including its impact on the environment and driver safety, Ford continues to explore developing such a feature itself. In fact, The Blue Oval filed a patent for a tank turn feature back in April 2022, one that would utilize a variety of controllers at each end of a vehicle that are capable of driving both axles in different directions.
Now, Ford has filed an updated tank turn patent that builds upon that idea. According to the filing, when the driver engages the tank turn feature, one of several things would happen, depending on which direction they want to turn in. The system would engage either the front right and rear left brakes or front left and rear right brakes, decrease the suspension load on the appropriate wheels, drive the front wheels in reverse, and drive the rear wheels forward, which would result in an ultra-tight turn.
One of the most notable differences between this updated patent and its predecessor is the fact that Ford doesn’t just list its potential uses as EVs, pickups, or even any other kind of four-wheeled vehicle – but rather, things like scooters and motorcycles. It’s pretty clear that The Blue Oval is taking a serious look at giving tank turn a chance – something Rivian ultimately decided not to do – but it remains to be seen if such a feature ever actually appears in a production vehicle.