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Ford wants to hide radar units into its badges

Ford wants to hide radar units into its badges

  • Future Fords might put radar units inside the Blue Oval badges
  • Hiding the radar units would make for a cleaner design
  • Volvo started hiding radar units behind its badging a few years ago

Ford may build radar sensors into grille badges, a recently discovered patent filing indicates.

The patent filing in question was published by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) June 4, 2024, but was submitted to the agency by Ford in September 2020. It describes a way to keep the traditional look of grille badges without inhibiting the function of an integrated radar unit.

Ford radar badge patent image

Ford radar badge patent image

According to the application, indium film would be molded into the shape of a badge, and surrounded by layers of plastic front and back. Also used in semiconductor applications, indium has a chrome-like appearance but still allows radar to “see” through it, Ford claims in the application.

Indium’s plasticity also makes it easy to mold into the desired shape. It can incorporate features of current grille badges, such as text and raised surfaces. To reduce distortion of the radar beam, any raised text would ideally have sides that don’t extend straight up from the surface of the badge, Ford notes.

Ford radar badge patent image

Ford radar badge patent image

Adding radar units to badges creates more flexibility for both styling purposes, and for the placement of the radar units themselves. The styling advantages are apparent with recent Volvos. The automaker began moving radar units behind its grille badges a few years ago, giving its cars a cleaner look.

Ford quietly introduced a simplified logo on the 2024 F-150 pickup truck, which was revealed in September of last year. Trucks with the new logo are now in production, but perhaps they’ll soon get integrated radar units as well.

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