Ford has a unique way of measuring interior storage spaces inside its vehicles and those of its competitors, and it’s not with a ruler--it’s with Ping-Pong balls.
"It was just a quirky idea that came out of a team brainstorm," says Ford vehicle architecture supervisor Eric Jackson. "But we then did some studies using Ping-Pong balls and found capacities were more consistently measured." Jackson’s team found that if two people measure the same console with a measuring tape, they often come up with different results. But if two people use Ping-Pong balls, they are more likely to get the same answer.
"The precise way volume is measured with Ping-Pong balls is fairly simple," explains Sejal Shreffler, Ford accommodation and usage engineer. They have developed a cubic measurement for each Ping-Pong ball that accounts for the open space in between a stack of balls. They then use that measurement and account for the number of Ping-Pong balls in the storage space to determine total volume.
But it's not just about the amount of space, but also the kind of space in a vehicle.
"Our team scans dozens of consumer goods from iPads to mountain bikes and wheelchairs to ensure these objects not only fit into our vehicles, but that there is a proper place for them," said Shreffler.
The Ford Escape features several places to store specific items in the interior, including objects like umbrellas, bottles and even mobile phones.
Visit Ford's booth at the 2015 Manila International Auto Show to see for yourself what the all-new Escape can do.