Ford Motor Company has filed a patent for a bumper-mounted inflatable device that may be used in future Ford vehicles, Ford Authority has learned.
The patent was filed on May 12th, 2022, published on November 16th, 2023, and assigned serial number 0365085.
The Ford Authority Take
With pedestrian deaths on the rise, Ford has filed a host of patents aimed at reversing that trend in recent months, including concepts revolving around an airbag that would be located in a vehicle’s hood, as well as a bumper assembly with an integrated airbag. Now, this newly filed patent keeps that trend going – and expands upon that latter idea a bit – with a concept for a bumper-mounted inflatable device that may be used in future Ford vehicles, too.
The purpose of this new patent filing is identical to the aforementioned pair – to help cut down on pedestrian deaths and injuries, as well as adhere to regulations in Europe and Japan revolving around leg-injury criteria for pedestrian protection. These regulations aim to prevent a pedestrian’s legs from sliding underneath a vehicle if they get hit by one, which can be quite catastrophic. However, higher-riding vehicles like trucks and SUVs tend to have higher bumper heights, making such an invention extra important.
To keep that from happening, this patent proposes adding two inflatable devices into the front bumper – one that would deploy upward, and another that deploys downward. This way, pedestrians would be protected not only from the blunt impact of the entire front end of the vehicle, but would also from being pulled underneath it and suffering even greater injuries – making this particular feature a potentially good fit for future Ford vehicles.