Trucks & SUVs

The 2021 Ford F-150 and Mustang Mach-E Just Went Hands-Free

Are you ready to take your hands off the wheel? Usually, that would put you in a very dangerous situation. However, the 2021 Ford F-150 and 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E just went hands-free with the Ford BlueCruise System. 

The 2021 Ford F-150 and Mustang Mach-E gain BlueCruise technology 

According to The Truth About Cars, the 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E and 2021 Ford F-150 are ready to go hands-free. The 2021 and Mach-E, and F-150 models will get the hands-free driver-assist system called SuperCruise via over-the-air updates in the third quarter of 2021. 

A metallic-red 2021 Ford F-150 Lariat four-door pickup truck traveling on a two-lane highway past thick trees on a sunny day
A 2021 Ford F-150 Lariat four-door pickup truck in Rapid Red Metallic Tinted Clearcoat

This system will rival the Tesla Autopilot and General Motors SuperCruise system. But there is a catch. To get the system, you must purchase a vehicle that’s equipped with the necessary hardware, which includes driver monitoring cameras. This equipment is included in the Ford Co-Pilot360 Active 2.0 Prep Package. 

Then you will have to pay $600 to use the Ford BlueCruise system for three years. That breaks down to $200 per year to take your hands off the wheel. This shouldn’t be surprising as more automotive brands are seeking subscription service models. 

How does the Ford BlueCruise System work? 

The purpose of the Ford BlueCruise system is to allow you to relax in your 2021 Ford F-150 or 2021 Mustang Mach-E by letting go of the steering wheel. Then the car will drive itself. But you have to drive on a compatible highway that’s been mapped in the system by lasers. 

Ford currently has over 100,000 miles of pre-qualified sections of divided highways mapped out as Hands-Free Blue Zones. When driving on a compatible highway, activate intelligent cruise control, which combines with active lane-keeping assistance to allow hands-free driving. You’ll be notified via text and blue lighting when you enter a Blue Zone. 

RELATED: Will the Electric Ford F-150 Actually Be Affordable?

Your F-150 or Mach-E will maintain a preset speed and distance from the vehicle in front of you as it steers according to lane markings. It also uses speed sign recognition to handle acceleration, braking, and steering tasks. 

But it only works if you pay attention to the road. An onboard camera will monitor driver attention at all times. The camera can detect eye movements while you’re wearing sunglasses and in low-light conditions. 

If you become sleepy, distracted, or attempt to do something else besides driving, the system will issue a warning. If you fail to comply with the notices, then your vehicle will automatically pull over and cease operation. 

Are other systems better? 

The BlueCruise system in the 2021 Ford F-150 and Mustang Mach-E may feel like it has some catching up to do. For example, according to Guide Auto Web, the Super Cruise system in Cadillac vehicles can automatically change lanes. 

A blue electric Ford Mustang Mach-E is seen at the 2020 New England Auto Show Press Preview at Boston Convention & Exhibition Center
The Ford Mustang Mach-E | Paul Marotta/Getty Images

Ford also hasn’t said when Blue Cruise will expand to incorporate smaller roads and city streets. It doesn’t seem different from what rivals have to offer, but we will be happy to put it to the test. This is just the beginning of the BlueCruise system, and Ford expects the technology to grow as it continues to make advancements.