Punishment Mode For Delinquent Car Owners

If you’re someone who’s known for missing a car payment or two, you might want to listen up.

Ford Motor Co (NYSE:F) has filed a patent for a system that could turn your vehicle into a punishment machine if you default on your loan. The system could disable everything from your air conditioning to your GPS, leaving you suffering in a muggy car with no idea where you’re going.

It gets worse. Ford also suggests the idea of ​​activating an audio component in the car to emit a horrifying noise every time you’re inside – a non-stop, deafening noise that would drive even the most patient people insane.

The rise of AI and self-driving: Artificial intelligence (AI) is playing an increasingly important role in people’s everyday lives. From AI becoming one of the biggest areas of venture capital funding for startups to the rise of programs like ChatGPT, applications are just getting broader. Ford’s latest filings show some of the more worrisome sides of this, but a patent filing doesn’t necessarily mean it’s being used and could help replace the malicious system currently used by take-back companies.

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The details: Ford is considering ways to repossess vehicles when the owner defaults on their payments. The patent, filed in August 2021 and published in February, describes sensors, cameras and other devices that could remotely disable the car and bring it to a halt when the rightful owner is not behind the wheel. And it’s not just the engine – things like the air conditioning could also be disabled.

According to the patent, failing to make some car payments would trigger a chain of in-car consequences that Ford calls a “tiered take-back process.”

First you will receive a reminder on the screen of your infotainment system. If you ignore that, there would be a second clue. And then things start to get interesting. Ford suggests your car could slowly turn into a living nightmare with all sorts of penalties for defaulting car owners. The car could disable its own air conditioning, auto key, GPS, or music system.

On vehicles with autonomous or semi-autonomous driving capabilities, the system could even move the car from one place to another to make it easier for a tow truck to come and take it away. If the lender decides that it is not financially viable to repossess the vehicle, the car could take itself to the junkyard.

The patent application goes into great detail as to how the system would work. The scary part is that if your car is connected to the internet, this technology could theoretically be applied to it.

Redemption Calculator: The patent describes a “repossession computer” that could be installed in future cars to make the system work seamlessly, but also states that no additional hardware would need to be added to the vehicle for it to work.

“In some embodiments, the vehicle computer may be configured to perform some or all of the functions of the redemption system computer,” the patent states.

Ford included measures in its patent to prevent owners from thwarting the take-back process, such as locking the vehicle in a locked garage. In this case, the system would automatically notify the police.

The patent for self-possessing cars hasn’t been granted yet, so people aren’t entirely at the mercy of their vehicles — yet. But with new and used car prices soaring in the wake of COVID, it’s no wonder companies like Ford are exploring all options to ensure they get their payments. According to Experian, drivers spend an average of $700 a month on new cars and $500 a month on used cars.

This patent raises some important questions about the future of autonomous vehicles and their uses.

See Next: Thanks to changes in federal law, anyone can invest in leading startups that develop innovative ideas. For example, RAD AI is pioneering the world’s first AI marketing platform built to understand emotions.

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This article Ford’s Newest Feature: Auto Owner Punishment Mode originally appeared on Benzinga.com


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