Motoring News

Back-seat drivers: Is driving tech bringing relief?

  • Can driving assistance tech silence naggers?
  • Second-row snide ‘remarks’ on way out?
  • Back-seat chirping under threat by Ford
TALK, TALK… Image: Supplied

DEARBORN, Michigan – “You can get over a lane.” “Watch that truck!” “You’re followig to close. Slow down!”

Ah, the incessant chirps of the backseat driver… but perhaps drivers hearing such common calls from the rear seats might end thanks to technology such as Ford US’ Co-Pilot360™.

A recent study published by Ford and sociologist Jess Carbino says 68% of drivers in the US believe back-seat driving will decrease because of driver-assist technology called Ford Co-Pilot360 Technology that’s expected to help to suppress the noise from the second row.

Other such benefits include blind-spot coverage, cross-traffic warning, pre-collision braking and auto emergency braking can help to reduce the risk of a collision.


Ford, which worked with sociologist Dr Jess Carbino, confirmed that back-seat drivers could cause more harm than good for vehicle passengers. Carbino said: ”Constant ‘advice’ from passengers is not only annoying but also stressful. Co-Pilot360 encourages trust during whiile driving and can help to create a more relaxed ad collaborative in-car atmosphere.”

The study’s findings claim to contradict a growing belief that technology is inhibiting ”human connection”, saying back-seat driving can cause in-vehicle relationships to suffer, driving assistance tech can help to prevent ”back-seat banter”.

”Drivers and passengers can focus not only on the enjoyable aspects of the ride but also each other.”


Ford says the data also suggests that, since respondents had confidence in the technology, it could help to eliminate rear-row advice.

Chris Billman, Ford Co-Pilot360’s engineering manager, said with a laugh: “Certainly the intent of the tech was not to eliminate back-seat driving but, hey, if we can help in that way too, that’s great!”

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