Ford's new 'Lincoln MKS' will park itself

Ford Motor's flagship sedan `Lincoln MKS' and the new `Lincoln MKT' seven-passenger luxury crossover will on its own do the stressful and frustrating task of parallel parking at the pressing of a button thanks to an exclusive new technology called `Active Park Assist'.

Available in mid-2009 as an option on the 2010 Lincoln MKS sedan and new Lincoln MKT crossover, Active Park Assist uses an ultrasonic-based sensing system and Electric Power Assisted Steering (EPAS) to position the vehicle for parallel parking, calculate the optimal steering angle and quickly steer the vehicle into a parking spot, Ford said in website release.

Lincoln MKS''With the touch of a button, Lincoln MKS and MKT drivers can parallel park quickly, easily and safely without ever touching the steering wheel,'' said Derrick Kuzak, Ford's group vice president of Global Product Development. ''This is another example of exclusive Ford smart technology, such as Ford SYNC, that makes the driving experience easier and more enjoyable for our customers.''

Active Park Assist system uses sensors on the front and rear of the vehicle to guide the vehicle into a parking space. The technology is a major leap forward in speed and ease of use compared with the camera-reliant systems offered by competitors, including a video camera-based system offered by Lexus. Ford's system requires less driver interface and reduces the risk of selecting a parking spot that is too tight. Ford's Active Park Assist also works in downhill parking situations, unlike competing systems.

Here's how Active Park Assist works:

The driver activates the system by pressing an instrument panel button, which activates the ultrasonic sensors to measure and identify a feasible parallel parking space.
The system then prompts the driver to accept the system assistance to park.