Size does matter for Ford

Ford Focus. Photo / Supplied
Ford Focus. Photo / Supplied

Ford has gone to great lengths - literally - to accommodate drivers as the new Focus starts to arrive in dealerships around New Zealand.

The company's engineers have designed the new Focus with the global population in mind - a population that is growing physically larger and taller.

Ford used the latest data gained from 3D body scans carried out on a large range of ages and races to make sure they can cater for all global populations. Their research ensures that more than 97 per cent of the world's adult population could sit comfortably in the new Focus.

"We use a global statistical database that gives us accurate size ranges of drivers in different parts of the world," says Ralph Gesang of Ford's Driving Environment. "It shows not only heights but also the different types of body statures."

According to scientific studies, the average human height in industrialised parts of the world has increased by around 10cm in the past 150 years, in part because of better living conditions and improved diet.

But it's not just our height and weight that Ford considered, it also notes the differences to drink preferences. In Europe, customers want storage for a 1.5-litre water bottle, while in China, room is needed for tea containers. The door pockets of the new Focus are designed to ensure customer drinking needs are met.

The engineers also looked outside the cockpit. In some regions of the world, the average height and arm length is lower than elsewhere. For these regions, the maximum opening height of the rear tailgate was lowered so customers could reach.

- NZ Herald

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