With my admiration for Ford vehicles, receiving an invitation to attend the 2014 Go Further with Ford Trend Conference in Dearborn was an honor.
My Dad has owned many Fords as we were growing up, and to this day compares his (older) Ford with my husband’s F-150. It’s fun to see the changes, improvements and technology evolve with the years, though I bet my dad would still go back to his Model A in a heartbeat.
With that said, a trip to Detroit to see the home of Ford was an opportunity not to be taken for granted. So I savored every minute. And then some.
The sessions at the Ford Trend Conference were informative, with insights on data, design and sustainability… but, for me, the best part was the test track, visiting the Product Development Center and taking a tour behind the scenes at Ford’s Dearborn Truck Plant.
On the Ford Test Track, we were given the opportunity to test drive the new vehicles and make a miniature one of our own. Attendees also had the opportunity to take a ride on the test track… with a robot for a driver! Yes, I am serious and have video to prove it! The driver was located 30 miles away and stayed within the lanes on the track! Awesome, right?
At the Product Development Center, we received a behind-the-scenes look at quality control. Lucky viewers were able to see how each vehicle is tested for quality, to make sure it can stand up to everything from potholed streets to repeated door slams – all without failure. It was interesting to see how Ford uses a variety of processes designed to test individual components and entire vehicle systems, resulting in durability and safety features all around.
At the Truck Plant, we learned about the innovative details implemented at Ford. With a sneak peak at the new F-150, we learned of it’s 360-degree camera features, including a front camera washer. We learned about the implementation of LED headlamps and found out what customers are looking for in the information cluster productivity screen on the dashboard.
While at the truck plant, we saw things that just aren’t imaginable until you see them. (And we were allowed to take pictures!) Did you know it only takes about 60 seconds to install a windshield? And that vehicles are produced according to a dealer’s order? There were so many interesting facts around the plant!
Thanks to Ford for the unforgettable experience!
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