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Safety in reverse gear for Ford


The Territory Ghia all-wheel-drive and rear-drive model will come with the tiny camera mounted in the lift handle of the rear hatch.

It will be an optional feature in the TS AWD and RWD model.

TX versions will miss out because the camera requires the in-dash screen to display the images.

Already the cornerstone of Ford's stunning revival of recent seasons along with the Falcon, the Territory becomes the first Australian-made vehicle to come with a factory-fitted reversing camera.

Only a select few imported vehicles are sold in Australia with reversing cameras, including some in the Lexus range.

The camera will make its debut in the first upgrade of the successful Territory; the SY model is booked to be released just after the Bathurst motor race next month.

Prices have been held back until the early October release.

A wide field of view is projected by the camera, which has an angle of 130 degrees and means the driver can see immediately outside the rear corners of the vehicle.

The distance the camera projects immediately behind the Territory is about 15m.

It becomes operational as soon as reverse is chosen, and the rear field of view is displayed on the dash-mounted screen.

Active safety will be taken to the next step when Dynamic Stability Control becomes standard on premium model Falcons when the BF is launched simultaneously with the updated Territory.

The Electronic Stability Program with DSC that was first featured in premium German saloons 10 years ago will now be incorporated into selected Falcons and the rear-drive Territories.

It will come as standard equipment on the rear-drive Territory Ghia and optional on TS and TX rear-drive Territories.

The latest generation Bosch System 8 DSC will also feature in an Aussie V8 sedan for the first time.

Up to 10 calibrations of the DSC feature, an acclaimed anti-skid and slipping electronic function, have been devised for Ford's Falcon and Territory family.

DSC helps drivers to regain control in the event of an emergency directional change or in the instance of unforseen grip changes on the road surface.

And in a breakthrough for budget private buyers and safety-conscious fleet customers, garden variety BF Falcons will gain traction control across the petrol sedan, wagon and WR Ute range.

More than 700 changes have been made to the SY Territory and BF Falcon range in what is already being hailed as a successful update.

Ford is not prepared to disclose how much all these model upgrades have cost.

But the investment, while certainly significant, has already been well received by the public.

Feedback from a lot of customers suggests that the BF is a winning evolution that does not alienate existing owners, as it looks predominantly the same externally as the BA — and the same applies to the SY Territory.

Looks are deceiving as the BF program has taken three years' work, with a big emphasis put on refinement for the new 6-speed sequential sports shift powertrain.

More than 300,000km were clocked in testing and 140,000 litres of fuel used. That's a high consumption figure because a lot of the distance covered was with a wide open throttle and in first gear.

Among other upgrades are performance brakes as standard on the BF XR6 turbo, XR8 sedans and utes and on Barra 230 sedans.

Traction control is not available on dedicated LPG Falcons because the system relies on spark retard to control engine torque.

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