Ford's Take on the Smart Car Could Stop us Getting Speeding Tickets

By Gary Cutlack on at

Rather than announcing an autonomous self-driving vehicle bioengineered from high-fructose corn syrup, car maker Ford is setting its sights on achieving a balance between today's manual cars and the hive-controlled world of the future -- by slowing you down when a speed camera is near.

The new Intelligent Speed Limiter will come pre-fitted in some S-MAX models, with the car adding the ability to limit a driver's speed when it comes within speed camera range to its arsenal of existing automated driving and speed-control tools. And as the limit rises, the ISL lifts the car's maximum speed and lets drivers go a bit quicker .All of which sounds like the sort of annoying feature you'll want to keep turned off.

It could be a bit hit and miss out in the real world, too. Ford says the system uses a windscreen-mounted camera to look out for road signs rather than any of the location databases that some speedtrap apps utilise, so it's going to be more vague than many tools.

The way it can reduce the car's maximum speed to that of the local speed limit when it correctly identifies a sign could well stop drivers accidentally wandering past limits, though, so perhaps Ford's not wrong in claiming it could stop you getting whacked with fines while driving unfamiliar stretches of road.