Ford continues to incrementally improve BlueCruise, its adaptive cruise control system with hands-free capability. On Thursday, the Dearborn-based automaker announced a version 1.3 update is in the works, which will be included in new Mustang Mach-E SUVs starting this summer, but that’s not all.
Later this season, BlueCruise 1.3 will also be delivered to 2021 to 2023 Mach-E’s already on the road thanks to a Ford Power-Up over-the-air software update. It hasn’t been confirmed, but existing F-150 Lighting pickup trucks will almost certainly receive the same enhancement at some point, hopefully sooner than later.
News of this enhancement was heralded on several internet forums for both abovementioned electric vehicles, though Jim Farley, Ford’s president and CEO, also announced the technology’s introduction on Twitter.
Our ADAS team is making the hands-free highway driving experience even better! BlueCruise 1.3 will start rolling out this summer in Mustang Mach-E's from the factory & then later this summer to existing BlueCruise-equipped Mach-E's via a software update. pic.twitter.com/eyaHdeVwNN
— Jim Farley (@jimfarley98) July 13, 2023
According to forum posts made by the automaker, BlueCruise 1.3 “will help you stay engaged in hands-free mode longer, including around curves and narrow lanes.” This incremental enhancement should address what is arguably the biggest complaint with the first generation of this technology, that it disengages far too often, even in moderate turns on the highway. Super Cruise, GM’s competing hands-free driving aid, has much less trouble with curves. Depending on the vehicle, Super Cruise allows you to tow trailers hands-free as well.
What’s interesting is how quickly Ford is advancing its BlueCruise technology. The laudable 1.2 version of this system was scheduled to start rolling out to existing Mustang Mach-E customers this summer, though the automaker appears to be superseding this version before it even gets pushed out. BlueCruise 1.2 brings some welcome enhancements to the table, including automatic lane change capability and improved lane-centering.
Aside from over-the-air software updates, your Mach-E may already have BlueCruise 1.3 right from the factory. If you ordered one of these all-electric SUVs after May 2, 2023, or if the vehicle was built after June 30, 2023, it should already have the latest and greatest version of BlueCruise, so give it a try on a limited-access divided highway near you, and enjoy the benefits of hands-free motoring.