With the new Ford Bronco and F-150, Ford introduced their new Sync 4 infotainment system. The focus has been on those vehicles themselves, so we are just now beginning to learn about some of the features the new system introduces. One of those will be extremely appealing to Bronco owners in particular. We already knew the system would include trail mapping built in, but a report from Autoblog confirms the the Ford Bronco navigation system will work offline, without cellular service.
The Ford Bronco is being aimed as a tool for wilderness adventures just as much as off-road driving. The Bronco’s off-road capability allows you to get out and see parts of nature other vehicles can’t reach, but still be a great daily driver. To get out to those remote locations, drivers will probably want to use the Bronco’s trail map network built into the navigation system.
But if anything goes hand in hand with remote locations, other than mosquitoes, vermin and hazardous reptiles, of course, it’s non-existent cell coverage. Luckily, Ford considered this, and told Autoblog Sync 4 in off-road capable vehicles like the Bronco and F-150 will have offline support.
It’s likely users can either download trail routes to the Ford Bronco navigation systems in advance, possibly during an over the air update. Alternatively, the route could download as you are driving and have coverage, and the downloads could cover other areas nearby, much like your music streaming service gets a few songs ahead pre-buffered to avoid interruptions. But these are just ideas, as Ford is yet to confirm how the off-line navigation system officially works.
Whether online or offline, Sync 4 navigation will have many perks that may actually tempt people not to just use Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. When towing, users can input their trailer dimensions and the navigation will avoid low bridges or narrow roads that could be problematic. Your smartphone app can’t do that, nor will it show detailed 4×4 trail coverage.