The debut of the Ford Atlas Concept at the Detroit Auto Show (NAIAS) showcases the fuel efficiency and smart technology that will define the future of trucks. They’ve also updated the look with a stronger, squared-off grille and added new features that enhance its functionality.
The Ford Atlas Concept cargo-box has multiple tie-down points in the walls and floor, 110-volt outlets to charge tools and LED lighting so you’re not in trouble when the sun goes down. Dynamic Hitch Assist uses the center display screen to make the whole process easier and segment-first Trailer Backup Assist lets you backup with the twist of a knob.
Adding even further to its improved functionality and ease of use is a 360-degree bird’s-eye view camera that helps when positioning the Ford Atlas Concept in narrow spaces. There’s also an improved tailgate step which now acts as a cargo cradle for longer loads and frees up more space in the cargo bed.
These are pretty exciting features and Ford is excited (check out the crazy smile on President and CEO Alan Mullaly’s face in the shot below) but they’re just the start.
The next generation EcoBoost powertrain in the Ford Atlas Concept has an auto start-stop that turns off the engine when the vehicle stops, but is smart enough to suspend this feature when the vehicle is towing. Direct injection and turbocharging give a 20% boost to fuel efficiency and a 15% reduction in CO2 emissions.
The Ford Atlas Concept has multiple features that help with fuel efficiency. There are automatic grille and wheel shutters that engage at high speeds, a drop-down front air damn and power running boards that deploy only when the truck is stopped and tuck away when the truck is moving.
Nicole Wakelin fell in love with cars as a teenager when she got to go for a ride in a Ferrari. It was red and it was fast and that was all that mattered. Game over. She considers things a bit more carefully now, but still has a weakness for fast, beautiful cars. When not drooling over cars, Nicole writes for Wired’s GeekMom.