• Jun 4th 2009 at 3:29PM
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2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid - Click above for a high-res image gallery

More technology than ever before is being added to modern automobiles, and much of this whiz-bang tech has been created to cut down on fuel consumption and reduce emissions. This being the case, it's not particularly surprising to hear that the new 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid holds the title of The Most Patented Car in History. So says Christine Wren, director of business development for The Patent Board, a firm that tracks and analyzes patents across 17 industries globally:

Ford's patented technologies are closer to the cutting edge than its competitors. Ford's overall patent portfolio plays a significant role in serving as a foundation for other technology innovation as shown by receiving 20 percent more citations than the average portfolio in this industry.

Just how many patents are we talking about? According to the Blue Oval, there are 119 total patents and patent applications for the 2010 Ford Fusion and Fusion Hybrid alone, including patents related to Ford's proprietary hybrid technology, SmartGuage with EcoGuide, Blind Spot Information System and EasyFuel Capless Fuel-Filler System. Want to know more? Make the jump for the official press release.

[Source: Ford]


2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid: The most patented car in history

· Leading patent analyst ranks Ford above all other automakers for the quality and significance of its technology patents.

· The 2010 Fusion and Fusion Hybrid – America's most fuel efficient mid-size sedan – sets new standard for technology innovation with 119 U.S. patents and patent applications

A study by the world's leading patent analyst, The Patent Board™, found that Ford Motor Company outperformed all other automakers in the quality and significance of its technology patents.

"Ford's patented technologies are closer to the cutting edge than its competitors," says Christine Wren, director of business development for The Patent Board, which tracks and analyzes patents across 17 industries globally.

Technological innovation is a core value at Ford as the company drives for leadership in quality, safety, fuel efficiency and in-car connectivity. For example, the 2010 Ford Fusion and Fusion Hybrid, which is America's most fuel efficient mid-size sedan, have 119 patents, a record for Ford.

The Patent Board recently issued its Top 10 Innovators in Automotive & Transportation Patent Scorecard™ for the fourth quarter of 2008, which ranks Ford above all other automakers in Research Intensity™ and Industry Impact™. Ford's Research Intensity score, which is more than twice that of the industry average, indicates the extent to which its portfolio includes patents with strong scientific support.

Similarly, The Patent Board's Industry Impact score measures the broader significance and impact of a company's patent portfolio across the industry. This indicator analyzes how other patents build on Ford's innovation by looking at patent-to-patent citations.

"Ford's overall patent portfolio plays a significant role in serving as a foundation for other technology innovation as shown by receiving 20 percent more citations than the average portfolio in this industry," Wren says.

For the Fusion Hybrid, for example, teams of research scientists and engineers developed Ford-exclusive technologies that helped the vehicle achieve a certified 41 mpg in the city, 8 mpg better than the Toyota Camry hybrid.

"Ford is using technology to remake our lineup with the green, high-tech vehicles customers want," says Derrick Kuzak, group vice president, Global Product Development. "The Fusion Hybrid team set the bar high – to develop America's most fuel efficient mid-size sedan – and that's what they delivered."

Patents on the Fusion Hybrid pertain to technologies such as Ford's new-generation hybrid powertrain and SmartGaugeTM with EcoGuide digital instrument cluster that helps coach drivers to achieve better fuel efficiency.

"We focus on getting high-quality patents that have the best breakthrough potential for the company," says Bill Coughlin, president and CEO of Ford Global Technologies.

Specific Fusion and Fusion Hybrid patents include:

· Hybrid technology – The Fusion Hybrid's powertrain system combines the best attributes of the gasoline engine and electric battery-driven motors to deliver the optimal experience for the customer in terms of driving performance and fuel economy. The overall system upgrade allows the hybrid to operate up to 47 mph in pure electric mode, approximately twice as fast as some competitors. The city driving range on a single tank of gas is expected to be more than 700 miles.

· SmartGauge with EcoGuide – This unique instrument cluster helps coach Fusion Hybrid drivers on how to optimize performance of their vehicle for maximum fuel efficiency. It features two, high-resolution, full-color liquid crystal display (LCD) screens on either side of the analog speedometer that can be configured to show different levels of information, including fuel and battery power levels, average and instant mpg report.

· Blind Spot Information System (BLIS™) with Cross Traffic Alert – Ford's new Cross Traffic Alert feature will help warn drivers of impending traffic while backing out by using radars to pick up moving objects within a 65-foot range from either side of the vehicle. Two warnings are given: an indicator lights up in the corresponding outside mirror and an audible alert is sounded. The feature works in conjunction with Ford's radar-based Blind Spot Information System, utilizing this system's two multiple beam radar modules, which are packaged in the rear quarter panels – one per side. The radar identifies when a vehicle enters the defined blind spot zone and illuminates an indicator light on the corresponding sideview mirror providing a warning that a vehicle is approaching.

· EasyFuel™ Capless Fuel-Filler System – This industry-exclusive feature eliminates the need to touch dirty gas caps and helps to reduce evaporative emissions that create smog and global warming. When fueling is completed and the fuel pump nozzle is removed, the system automatically seals shut.

Patenting is a global activity at Ford, with experts in the United States, Europe, India and China sharing common processes and reporting through Ford Global Technologies, LLC, a wholly owned Ford subsidiary responsible for managing Ford's intellectual property worldwide.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      Cool to see Ford innovating once again. I hope that they use all these "patents" across all their vehicles. Every car company needs a "test out new features" vehicle. If they could use all that fancy tech on a hybrid Focus, it would get you better mileage then a Prius... and look 1,000 times better.
      • 6 Years Ago
      To be honest, I'm surprised that every car doesn't have 119 patents associated with it. It's an incredibly complicated collection of machinery, electronics, user interface, software, etc...

      I guess usually it's not worth the cost to patent every bit of every car?
        • 6 Years Ago
        While it is high-precision and innovative with every new car, there simply isnt enough "new" to actually _patent_ it. That being said, try doing a knockoff of too much of even a lightly-patented car and the lawyers will be beating down your door in no time.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Can you patent ugly?

      That would explain the 20%
        • 6 Years Ago
        Joe, thankfully AB edditors do not frequent the comments section. If they did I would have been banned YEARS ago.
        • 6 Years Ago
        God, just go away, troll. I just don't get your hatred of Ford. I assume you're working for a competing manufacturer or marketing firm. Hopefully AB will ban you, jackass.
        • 6 Years Ago

        It looks like the new Acura TL...Ford has some of the worst so-called "designers" on the planet. And this unhealthy obsession with the horrid three-bar grille has to go. It is like a disease.

        The grille on the hideous 2010 Fusion takes crass and ugly to a whole new level.

        It truly is a terrible looking, FWD, Camry mobile.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I don't understand how anyone could not find this car at least relatively visually appealing. I mean, it looks worlds better than the other cars in this class. It's certainly no Aston Martin, but then again, it's no Yugo.
        • 6 Years Ago
        The Mondeo, Falcon, and Euro Focus sucks???

        What sucks about them?
        • 6 Years Ago
        rofl. that was harsh. It may not be the best looking sedan on the market.

        that's all.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Haha...I was just gonna say, there must not be a lot of people patenting ugly. Good for them being innovative, but you have to admit the car may be a lot of things, but pleasing to the eye it isn't.
      • 6 Years Ago
      2010 Fusion is impressive all the way around. I enjoyed riding in it and it doesn't compare to the others. I LOVE FORD PRODUCTS!!!! My mustang rocks as well. Keep up the good work FORD!!!!!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Wow! That's really neat.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Ford must intend to make more money from the patents than the manufacture of cars...
      • 6 Years Ago
      What an ironic twist of fate. I took one of my best friends out looking for cars and we drove the Camry and Fusion hybrids back to back. Hands down,Ford has done a remarkable job of enhancing Hybrid technology to the next level.The 2010 Fusion is one of the most improved cars of the new season and this runs from the basic structure to the user friendly technology and drivetrain. I used to sell Lexus and found the Camry competent but boring. The interior quality has suffered by a noticeable cheapness(switchgear,knobs,fabrics,etc).

      The Fusion test drive was done to support cancer fund raiser and I wasn't expecting much.As we approached, she commented how good looking it was.I am a fan of how they're blending the 'euro' look with the signature 3 bars(if Audi,BMW,MB, can have a signature,why can't Ford or Chev.as well).As for the drive, the leather seats where comfy( well bolstered), the electric drive amazing how long and much speed we obtained.We could feel a slight 'bump' when engine kicked in but we were also at approximately 37mph. The pickup was good but the brakes amazingly normal and non-pulsing like on the Camry.The eco gauge package was a real revelation despite reading all about it here and other auto press outlets, it works to help you drive efficiently and frankly,is almost as cool as the synch pakage.Most impressisve was the quiet and controlled ride,a far cry better then the Camry we had just driven(ride).

      If you want to be a hater, you'll never appreicate this very nice domestic.My only complaints where horrible roof mounted Sirius antenae and the 'sticker price' (27-30K) mentality.The latter will perhaps change in time unless this car really catches on.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I think Fusion is excellent car.

      But let's calm down and separate marketing-speak from reality.

      But: Blind Spot Information System (BLIS™) with Cross Traffic Alert
      You can give it different name, change two wires and patent it in the US, but European 2008 Mazda 6 uses the RVM system with two radars to monitor traffic behind the car and warns the driver. After reading Ford's description, it's hard to spot the difference.

      Speaking of Mazda, is that 2.5 liter MZR engine seems to be working rather well in the Fusion. Which is a good thing.

        • 6 Years Ago
        I am 99% sure BLIS is a Volvo technology.

        From Wikipedia: "In 2004, Volvo introduced the BLIS system, which detects vehicles entering the Volvo's blind spot with a side view mirror mounted sensor and alerts the driver with a light".

        Ford owns Volvo... they've done this before. The Ford Explorer with rollover protection was described in advertising as the first vehicle to have the technology, despite it coming from the Volvo XC90 which was on the market before the Explorer in question.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Ford is the shining star among the big three.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The FFH is more attractive in person. For whatever reason it looks bland in photos but not in person.
      • 6 Years Ago
      That is simply impressive.
      Well done.
      • 6 Years Ago
      have they patented the delay wiper system yet?

      i think i should get on that one.
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