Car News

Ford Gives Bronco, F-150 Wilderness-Ready Navigation

Ford's pretty serious about the upcoming Bronco's off-road chops in the suspension department, but they've given it some cool new tech to keep you on the trail. That's even when you're out of cell coverage, and it'll also be on the new F-150 pickup.

Yes, even in 2020, if you go far enough off-road (or even on-road, depending on where you live), you'll find that your cell phone shows no bars. When that happens, your fancy-pants phone navigation is probably going to stop working. Or at least get spotty.

With the Sync 4 system and nav partner Telenav, Ford is offering a hybrid navigation system. It works like a smartphone nav when you're in coverage, and like a traditional one when you're out; and it has some extras that help you keep on truckin' in both situations.

The navigation system has routing options that most systems don't. That includes an off-road function that's loaded with off-road 4x4 trails and a database that can have more trails added to it over time. So even if you head off the beaten path, you might still have a line on the map to follow. It automatically stores routes so that if cell coverage drops, you still have a route and a path to trace. No matter where you are, it should be able to help you get back home.

When you're on-road, the connected nav has location info like parking, local restaurants and reviews, and real-time traffic like you'd expect from your phone. It also has a towing route option that lets you punch in your trailer dimensions and helps avoid roads that'll be a problem.

Other smartphone-like features include predictive suggested destinations and spoken word searches, which Ford says helps you get more from your vehicle.