Ford Authority

Ford BlueCruise Rated Poor By All-New IIHS Rating System

Since it launched a few years ago, Ford’s BlueCruise hands-free highway driving assist feature has garnered quite a bit of praise from critics, ranking as Consumer Reportsbest active driving assistance systems (ADAS) on multiple occasions and also finishing third in a recent test conducted by Edmunds. However, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) just introduced a new ratings system for ADAS features with tougher standards, and perhaps unsurprisingly, it resulted in some poor showings not only by BlueCruise, but also, basically every other similar system currently on the market.

In fact, IIHS tested 14 systems from automakers like Ford, BMW, General Motors, Genesis, Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Tesla, and Volvo, and only one receiving a rating of acceptable two were rated marginal, all while the other 11 achieved “poor” ratings. Lexus’ Teammate system was the only one to rank as acceptable in the current LS sedan (IIHS ranked these systems based on model), SuperCruise in the GMC Sierra and Nissan ProPILOT in the Ariya received marginal rankings, and everything else – including BlueCruise – landed on the poor side of the equation.

Ford Mustang Mach-E BlueCruise Spain - Interior 001

BlueCruise did manage to come close to achieving good scores in driver monitoring – ranking acceptable in that regard – and it also ranked “good” in the categories of attention monitors, lane change, and cooperative steering. However, it was hampered by marginal rankings in emergency procedures and ACC resume, as well as poor in terms of safety features.

The IIHS notes that BlueCruise “immediately issued alerts when the driver’s face or the camera lens was covered, but failed to detect when the driver’s hands were occupied with another task.” However, it failed to meet of the emergency escalation procedures if the driver does not respond to those attention reminders, nor any of the other new protocol. Regardless, the IIHS maintains that the purpose of this more stingiest testing is to prompt automakers to make improvements to their respective systems.

“These results are worrying, considering how quickly vehicles with these partial automation systems are hitting our roadways,” said IIHS President David Harkey. “But there’s a silver lining if you look at the performance of the group as a whole. No single system did well across the board, but in each category at least one system performed well. That means the fixes are readily available and, in some cases, may be accomplished with nothing more than a simple software update.”

We’ll have more on BlueCruise soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for continuous Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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  1. Edward

    It seems their testing wasn’t on how well the systems actually performed, but instead on how the systems passed their arbitrary “safety standards”. Yes, I want a system that is safe, but I also want one that can actually drive more than 10 feet.


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