Once a feature only offered in exclusive luxury cars, the broader availability of electric power-assisted steering in mass-market vehicles has also facilitated the offering of parking assist on mainstream vehicles, such as the 2013 Ford Escape. As with many technologies, the first-generation systems were sometimes easily confused and not totally smooth.
But the refinement of the technology has resulted in an easy-to-use system that asks nothing more of the driver than shifting from drive to reverse, and gently applying the brakes when necessary. How easy is it in real life? To prove its ease of use Ford of Canada released this video of two 2013 Escapes doing a
synchronized parallel parking number, set to Johann Strauss' Blue Danube Waltz.
Even if you're an admitted parallel parking-phobe, you have to admit it looks pretty painless in this video. Of course, if you're in midtown Manhattan with angry cabbies honking or yelling at you, or up a steep hill in San Francisco, the scenario is a little trickier, but still doable.
Do you think this video is an accurate representation of how easy the system is to use, or an elaborately-staged PR stunt putting Ford's new SUV and its whiz-bang parking system in the best possible light?