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Ford has filed a patent for a four-wheel steering system for F-series trucks. With the 14th gen 2021 F-150 being the next major redesign in the F-series lineup, we wouldn't be one bit surprised to see four wheel steering debut on the next F-150.

Via Autoblog:

Ford patent describes four-wheel steering for F-Series trucks



January 6, 2020

Lots of cars have employed four-wheel steering over the years, but it's not currently available on any of the vehicles that you'd think could really benefit from increased low-speed maneuverability: fullsize pickup trucks. General Motors dabbled in the technology a few decades back, but the company's Quadrasteer system hasn't been offered as an option on Chevy Silverado or GMC Sierra trucks since the mid-2000s. A new patent application indicates that Ford, America's leader in fullsize pickup truck sales, is at least considering the possibility of four-wheel steering for its F-Series trucks.



Originally spotted by PatentStorm, which goes on to explain the drawings and explanations in detail, Ford's four-wheel steering design incorporates Ackerman steering geometry. That allows the inside and outside wheels to trace different paths and thereby reduces tire scrub and wear. The Drive points out that German automotive supplier ZF used a Ford F-150 as a test bed to try out its own four-wheel steering setup for trucks, but we can't say if the two systems are related.

The images included in the patent application depict a heavy duty pickup truck with single rear wheels. The steering gear is mounted as a tidy package to the truck's rear axle, which is suspended by leaf springs. It's unclear if or when Ford may offer four-wheel steering on its trucks, but at least we know it's on their radar.
 

Degrominator

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Four wheel steering on a pickup would be particularly helpful, don't know why it hasn't been done yet. On a long vehicle like a pickup, it'd reduce the turning radius by a big percentage. It would cut down on body roll and yaw on high speed lane changes.

But the biggest benefit is trailer towing, where it would reduce trailer sway. The rear steering could be programmed to detect trailer sway and counter it immediately. This would also increase towing capacity numbers, as towing weight isn't just a function of power/torque but also factors in controllability at speed.
 

CHP

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Four wheel steering on a pickup would be particularly helpful, don't know why it hasn't been done yet. On a long vehicle like a pickup, it'd reduce the turning radius by a big percentage. It would cut down on body roll and yaw on high speed lane changes.

But the biggest benefit is trailer towing, where it would reduce trailer sway. The rear steering could be programmed to detect trailer sway and counter it immediately. This would also increase towing capacity numbers, as towing weight isn't just a function of power/torque but also factors in controllability at speed.
Great points! Some of those benefits I didn't even think of when first reading the news. I found a demonstration video of ZF testing four-wheel-steering on an F-150. Hope the next F150 gets it!

 

TXhauler

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Four wheel steering on a pickup would be particularly helpful, don't know why it hasn't been done yet. On a long vehicle like a pickup, it'd reduce the turning radius by a big percentage. It would cut down on body roll and yaw on high speed lane changes.

But the biggest benefit is trailer towing, where it would reduce trailer sway. The rear steering could be programmed to detect trailer sway and counter it immediately. This would also increase towing capacity numbers, as towing weight isn't just a function of power/torque but also factors in controllability at speed.
Sounds like huge benefits and makes a pickup's size and heft easier to manage. Why have no companies added four wheel steering to their pickups yet? It's not like hasn't been used on other types of vehicles.
 

Degrominator

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Sounds like huge benefits and makes a pickup's size and heft easier to manage. Why have no companies added four wheel steering to their pickups yet? It's not like hasn't been used on other types of vehicles.
GM did try way back in the early 2000's with the Quadrasteer system. It was available on GM's full size pickups and it worked really well but it was poorly marketed and cost $7200!! No surprise the take rate was too low and it got axed.
 

mikemoneyshots

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This is awesome and excited for Ford. With all this new engineering being implemented makes me very excited, so excited that Im a little skeptical of purchasing the first year of this 14th generation. But hey you only live once
 

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This is awesome and excited for Ford. With all this new engineering being implemented makes me very excited, so excited that Im a little skeptical of purchasing the first year of this 14th generation. But hey you only live once
Yea the 14th gen seems to be much more about the technology improvements and interior upgrades than a revolutionary exterior change. Four wheel steering is definitely a big new feature. Just hope they price is reasonably.
 

Peter P

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GM did try way back in the early 2000's with the Quadrasteer system. It was available on GM's full size pickups and it worked really well but it was poorly marketed and cost $7200!! No surprise the take rate was too low and it got axed.
Interesting history info, never knew that it was ever available on pickups. With four wheel steering being pretty common option now (you can get it multiple models by Acura, Lexus, BMW, Porsche), I don't think it'll be too pricey an option.
 

TheOne

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GM did have four wheel steering but the rack really hung down under the diff

1585301964333.png
 

Degrominator

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GM did have four wheel steering but the rack really hung down under the diff

1585301964333.png
Yea that doesn't look like a nicely integrated rear steering rack. That was almost 20 years ago though and the Ford patent in the first post shows a much smaller and well integrated rear steering components.

One interesting tidbit - GM's Quadrasteer system rear axle was 5-6 inches wider than the standard axle so it required widened hips on the truck, which had the effect of making them look beefier and stand apart from regular models. I don't think Ford's rear steering system would require different bodywork in the rear.
 
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