The text-to-speech feature is part of the Ford SYNC system and offers an alternative to the dangers of text driving.
In a recent survey commissioned by Ford, it was revealed that 33 per cent of UK drivers admit to having read texts behind the wheel, with a further 95 per cent of drivers saying that texting affected their driving ability and safety.
By using Ford’s audio voice recognition featured on the SYNC system, the new text-to-speech allows drivers to receive their texts via an audio output by connecting their smartphones through Bluetooth, which means they can listen to the texts contents as they drive.
The new system also allows drivers to respond to a text by merely saying what they want to reply with. Also, to save time the system features a series of predetermined responses, such as “See you in 10 minutes”, so drivers can quickly select and then get on with driving.
Ford is trying to make the SYNC system as compatible as possible with a range of smartphones. Christof Kellerwessel, chief engineer, electronic and electrical systems engineering, Ford of Europe, said:
“Smartphones have quickly become an essential part of many people’s day. However, text messages can be a distraction for drivers, so the benefit of a system that can read messages aloud from compatible smartphones is obvious.”
Fords SYNC system is available in the US with over 4 million users. It is soon to be debuted in the UK on the new Ford B-MAX and will eventually be available on the Kuga and Focus models.
Ford vehicles are available from Perry’s Aylesbury and High Wycombe dealerships.