Ford Motor Company has filed new patents on a retractable exhaust system that will enhance the off-roading experience. According CarBuzz, who claims to have found them, the patents have been filed in both Germany and the United States, leading us to assume the device can be fitted to a vehicle that is sold worldwide, such as the next-generation Ford Ranger Raptor, or perhaps eventually the Ford Bronco. However, we at MC&T think it’s better suited for something like the S650 Ford Mustang. And we’ll get to that in a minute, but first, here’s what you need to know…
Fixing A Well-Documented Problem
In the unlikely event that you take to the hills and dip your toes in the off-roading world, you may come across a motorist or two that have dented the exhaust tip of their vehicle while traversing a pile of rocks, or perhaps misjudging the departure angle clearance. That’s because the exhaust pipe tends to protrude out from the rest of the body, and as a result is more vulnerable to kissing a pile of stones or a log. Ford Motor Company attempts to solve this problem by inventing and patenting an exhaust tip retract module (ETRM).
The Ford Retractable Exhaust Tip Patent
The Ford patent drawing itself seems to include a tail pipe that is physically separated from the rest of the exhaust system, which can be adjusted via an electric motor. The entire assembly houses an actuator, multiple bearings, and gears as well as extension shafts in a rack and pinion system to make the exhaust tip “disappear”, when desired.
For The Ford Bronco, Or The Ford Mustang?
As Thomas Sowell says: “there are no solutions, there are only trade-offs.” While a retractable exhaust could be a benefit for off-roading, this solution could ultimately be a more expensive problem to fix, should things go wrong. A busted motor and actuator assembly can’t be that cheap, so we’re left thinking that this device could perhaps be used for on-road use. Imagine a Ford Mustang that could adjust its exhaust pitch with the push of a button. Perhaps the incoming, next-generation S650 Mustang. This retractable exhaust system could likely do that, in similar way that a trombone plays different music notes. That would be quite the party trick in a market segment that loves party tricks, if we do say.
Should it be more for off-roading, we likely wouldn’t see a system like this right away. Being that this OEM hardware would likely require a fair bit of deep engineering, testing and integration, it would likely end up in a refreshed model, like the 2025 Ford Bronco, at best. For something a bit more ground-up, the next-generation 2023 Ford Ranger Raptor comes to mind.
Readers: we’ll leave it up to you. Where do you think a retractable exhaust system would work best for Ford Motor Company? The S650 Ford Mustang, refreshed Ford Bronco, or all-new Ford Ranger? Sound off in the comments below!