Ford Wants “Burnout” Mode in its Electric Cars, Files Patent For New Tech

The smoke from a burnout is "a visual display of power," Ford writes in its patent.

Ford may soon add a feisty new trick to its electric cars. A new patent by the American carmaker talks about a controller that can be added to its EVs, which can let drivers “intentionally spin the tires of the second axle.” Simultaneously, the front tires shall experience a “braking force” to keep the car from moving forward, ultimately resulting in a “peelout” or a “burnout.” The patent considers it as a feature to “provide a visual display of power” in its electric cars.

A “burnout” is arguably the most popular maneuver performed on a car or a bike. In most cases, these are associated with high-performance cars, which Ford has a lot to do with. As it electrifies its lineup with EVs like Mach-E or Mach-E GT, it may be looking to bring the visual appeal associated with a burnout, onto the new class of vehicles. After all, Ford has had a hero product in cars like Ford Mustang and Ford GT, which were often seen performing stunts of this kind. Looks like Ford does now want the Mach-E generation to miss out on the fun.

In fact, the new controller mentioned in the recent patent filed by Ford with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), seems to be compatible “with existing hardware in various vehicles via a software or programming update.” What it does, is provide torque to one axle, while simultaneously applying the brake to the other axle. When the first axle is on the brake and the second one spins, the car shall perform a conventional burnout, to produce “heating or smoking of the tires.” Conventional, because the system shall also work vice-versa, with the second axle on the brake and the first axle spinning, i.e. a burnout with the front tires.

Ford calls it “An Electrified Vehicle Performance Mode With Intentional Wheel Spin For Tire Heating,” a rather flowery name for a “burnout” mechanism. The patent holds sketches of a Ford car making these burnouts, both with the front and the rear tires. Interestingly, the sketches depict the Ford Mach-E silhouette, meaning we might see the feature being rolled out to the widely popular all-electric coupe by Ford. Now that shall be interesting to see – a Mach-E raising smoke.

There is also a more practical advantage of spinning tires at a point. A burnout heats up the tires too, making them dash forward at the launch of a race. There is but, only limited use for such a feature for a regular EV owner, and that is the same as what it was with a petrol car, showing it off on the streets. With the new patent, Ford may just be making sure that the owners of its electricifed lineup do not lose out on that experience.