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Those funsters at Ford! They want you to have the same enjoyment of your EVs as you once had with your 1969 Mach I. And we all know that part of the fun of owning a high-performance car is doing the things it offers. You know, like hooning around doing burnouts. Once frowned upon by police and city fathers, it seems maybe not to be the case anymore as the Dearborn automaker wants its EVs to have a “Burnout Mode,” or does it?

Can EVs already do four-wheel burnouts now?

Hurst Olds
1966 Hurst Hairy Olds Toronado 442 exhibition car | Gerry Stiles via Getty

But Ford is going one step further that the ability to do a burnout. It not only wants you to be able to do burnouts with the front wheels, but it also wants you to be able to do four-wheel burnouts. Just like the Hurst Hairy Olds Toronado exhibition car back in the day. 

Here’s what Carbuzz found in a recent patent application filing by Ford for an “electrified vehicle performance mode with intentional wheel spin for tire heating.” Though originally filed with the U.S. Patent Office in 2021, it has recently been refiled.  

Why does Ford want EVs to have burnout modes?

Ford EV “Burnout Mode” patent | USPTO

We’ve never heard of a need for “tire heating,” except in one instance, to make tires sticky for improved traction. And Ford goes on to explain just that function. It states the purpose is to “provide a peel out and associated heating or smoking of the tires to improve traction and provide a visual display of power.” To you and me, that’s a burnout

It goes on to describe how one axle is held by the brakes while the power to the other axle is engaged. Then that axle has the brakes engaged while the other axle receives the power. That sounds more like a line-lock used in drag racing for decades. In fact, the Hurst Hairy Olds is the first to use a line-lock system, developed by Hurst in 1966. 

So the line-lock feature is for both the front and back axles. Then the patent describes a “sequential maneuver that spins the tires of the first axle followed by the tires of the second axle.” In other words, to create your own four-wheel burnouts for the pleasure of everyone. Everyone, that is, except for those huffing the tire smoke. 

Ford EV “Burnout Mode” patent | USPTO

When will we see it in production Mach-Es?

Ford has applied such technology for its Mustang Mach-E 1400. That’s the crazy Mach-E from 2020 to “demonstrate the performance possibilities of electric propulsion.” It used seven electric motors to achieve 1,419 hp with over 1,000 kg of downforce at 160 mph. Built in conjunction with RTR, its use would include drag racing and drifting which benefit from lots of power and downforce. 

So will we see this in the 2024 Mustang Mach-E? It’s very doubtful. While some clever DIYers might be able to rig their own Mach-Es to attempt four-wheel burnouts, Ford probably won’t be adding it to any of its EVs anytime soon. 

But at least the seed is planted for EV owners looking for some attention and fun. But keep in mind that the police will be seeking you seeking this type of four-wheel fun. 


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