Patent

  • 2021 Ford Bronco test mule spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

    Patent filings are giving us an idea of how the the 2021 Ford Bronco could be taking shape. Last week we reported on a patent for nifty removable doors with built-in crash beams, and now we learn about a patent for a retractable cloth roof with a few neat tricks. The patent depicts the option of a removable cloth cover that can be added after the driver removes the hard-top roof. A removable hard top has been rumored as one of the Bronco's many features. Motor Trend discovered and first reported on the patent last Friday, The latest patent also describes a few options once the hard-top roof...

  • Potential Ford Bronco removable door patent
    Possible 2021 Ford Bronco patent shows off trick removable doors

    The 2021 Ford Bronco may come with some pretty nifty removable doors, if a new patent is any indication. Patent images first published by Motor Trend on Thursday show off removable doors that include impact beams. The beams can also be removed and reattached to the vehicle. The nifty system...

  • 2020 Toyota Corolla XSE
    Toyota patent details fragrance system to bombard thieves with tear gas

    Toyota has an idea that sounds like it came from James Bond's Q Branch. It would turn a seemingly harmless fragrance dispenser into something of an anti-theft device. A new patent from the Japanese automaker details a system that can spew tear gas at would-be carjackers. Australian website WhichCar...

  • Rivian R1T electric pickup concept
    Rivian patents removable auxiliary battery pack tech

    Rivian doesn't plan to keep owners tied down to built-in batteries and their ranges if a new patent discovery is any clue. The startup electric car maker filed to patent removable auxiliary battery pack technology. The Rivian Forums first discovered the patent on Monday, though Rivian filed for the...

  • Mystery Ford Mustang teaser
    Ford hybrid V-8 patent discovered, could power Mustang and/or F-150

    We've known for two years that Ford has a Mustang hybrid planned, but a new patent gives us a glimpse at what could be the electrified pony's powertrain. The best news: eight cylinders are pictured, which indicates any Ford Mustang hybrid will keep a V-8 engine and only add electric motors for more...

  • Mid-engine C8 Corvette power door patent
    Mid-engine Corvette may sport intelligent power doors

    The mid-engine C8 Corvette could feature some nifty power doors if a new patent sheds any light on the feature. First published to the MidEngineCorvette Forum and reported by The Drive last Friday, the patent describes trick power doors for the driver and passenger to take advantage of. While power...

  • Apple’s self-driving system atop a Lexus RX - Image via MacCallister Higgins

    Apple produces some intriguing patents. Their latest is for a system they call "Peloton" that could platoon self-driving electric cars for better long-range efficiency and energy sharing. The technology company's filing Tuesday with United States Patent and Trademark Office explains a wild way to keep electric cars charged while part of the platoon. Foremost, it's probably worth explaining what a "peloton" is for the unfamiliar. Aside from being a fancy piece of workout equipment, a peloton is a pack of cyclists that jockey among each other to reduce drag and conserve energy for teammates...

  • 2020 Chevrolet Corvette (C8) spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien
    Mid-engine C8 Corvette could get clutch-by-wire manual transmission

    Chevrolet's worst-kept secret is the C8-generation mid-engine Corvette. We've heard a lot of rumors about the upcoming sports car with its engine mounted in the middle, but one has persisted: there won't be a manual transmission. That could change with a new patent General Motors has filed. The...

  • Apple patent for non-linear sunroof
    Apple patented haptic seats and sunroof

    Apple filed to patent more than 2,000 ideas last year, and we'll likely never see many of them reach daylight. But, automobile patents are becoming more common from the technology giant. The most recent patents, both awarded in the last couple of weeks, involve a trick sunroof and haptic-feedback...

  • Patent drawing for Cadillac coupe
    Patent drawings hint at Cadillac Escala-inspired coupe

    We may have the first evidence that Cadillac is working on a coupe with styling inspired by the brand's Escala concept unveiled in 2016. Patent drawings discovered recently by Cadillac Society on the website of the United States Patent and Trademark Office depict a coupe with elements almost...

  • Uber logo
    Uber files patent for controversial tech to avoid unsafe areas, older cars

    Uber may be gearing up for a new round of controversy due to a pending patent filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The ride-sharing company has filed a patent for a controversial new technology that could route riders out of unsafe areas, and even discriminate against drivers...

  • GM to patent shape-shifting car designs
    GM imagines real Transformers with shape-shifting car design patents

    In director Michael Bay's version of the "Transformers" franchise, the world of Decepticons and Autobots is heavily populated by General Motors products. Bumblebee used to be an old Volkswagen Beetle, but now it's a late-model Camaro. As reported by GM Inside News, GM has filed for patent...

  • GM patent for twin-charged high-compression hybrid powertrain

    The latest General Motors patent underscores how busy the automaker's powertrain engineers have been. The automaker received a patent approval for a high-compression, twin-charged hybrid powertrain in October, AutoGuide reported Wednesday. And when we say "high compression," we're talking ridiculously high compression. At the powertrain's core is an internal-combustion engine paired with a low-flow supercharger and a high-flow turbocharger. The supercharger takes care of low-end power, while a turbocharger would spool up after 3,000 rpm. The traditional mechanicals would connect to one or...

  • Mazda patent for active rear spoiler design
    Mazda patents active rear spoiler design inspired by RX-Vision

    Mazda certainly has been on a patent spree as of late. We've reported on Aston Martin-style doors and even a twin-turbo and electrically supercharged engine. Now, the Japanese automaker has filed to protect an active rear spoiler. While plenty of active rear spoilers are on the market, Mazda earned...

  • Ford self-leveling cupholder patent image
    Ford patent shows self-leveling cupholder--no more spills

    File this to Ford's growing list of obscure patents the American automaker has moved to protect over the past few years. It looks like Ford may be interested in ensuring drivers' beverages arrive intact with a self-leveling cupholder. Ford moved to protect the self-leveling cupholder with the U.S...

  • Mazda patent image for swan doors
    Mazda patents Aston Martin-esque doors, but why?

    We still don't know what exactly the bright minds at Mazda are up to with regards to a new RX-branded sports car, but the Japanese automaker hasn't been shy about patenting some interesting things. For example, Mazda most recently patented Aston Martin-like doors. Why? We don't know, but they open...

  • Mazda twin-turbo electric supercharged engine patent
    Mazda patents engine with two turbos and an electric supercharger

    We have to hand it to Mazda. Lately, the small Japanese automaker has punched well above its weight with the announcement it would bring a gasoline Homogenous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) to market in 2019, dubbed Skyactiv-X. But, what's this? Another piece of news surrounding a future Mazda...

  • Toyota pillar cloaking device patent
    Toyota patent shows device that can make car pillars transparent

    Long gone are the days of narrow roof pillars that not only looked good from the outside but provided optimal visibility from inside the cabin. Safety standards, while necessary, have enlarged car pillars to sizes that sometimes make it pretty difficult to check surroundings. Toyota may have...

  • Ford removable steering wheel and pedals patent

    Engineers at Ford have gazed into the future with the latest patent filed by the automaker. The system shows an interior dashboard that involves a removable steering wheel and pedals for self-driving cars. First discovered by Motor1, the patent states the removable driver functions would be beneficial for "development purposes" and "enables the easy provision of a steering wheel as a customer-requested option.” That's right, Ford seems to imagine a future where a steering wheel and pedals are customer options, not standard. Freaky. The assumption with this system is that Ford would use...

  • 2017 Toyota 86
    Toyota's latest transmission patent is similar to '60s Saab technology

    The manual transmission faces an uncertain future. Increasing emissions standards, future safety technology, and dwindling take rates could spell its demise. But a new patent shows Toyota gives a shift, as we like to say, and it could give the manual gearbox an extended lease on life. Roadshow...

  • Patent drawing for BMW X1 long-wheelbase model - Image via PC Auto
    2016 BMW X1 Long-Wheelbase Model Revealed In Patent Drawings

    BMW is working on a long-wheelbase version of its second-generation X1 compact crossover that we’ve already spied in prototype form. The vehicle is expected to offer third-row seats, but given its small stature we’re not expecting it to be made available in the United States. Instead...

  • Patent drawing for BMW plug-in hybrid research vehicle - Image via Car News China, PC Auto
    Mystery BMW Is A Plug-In Hybrid Research Vehicle

    Patent drawings for a vehicle with distinct BMW-design cues recently surfaced and were initially thought to be for a new research vehicle from the German automaker, one equipped with a hydrogen fuel cell stack. It’s since been revealed that the patent drawings are in fact for a BMW research...

  • Google Autonomous Pothole Patent
    Google To Combat Potholes Suggests Latest Patent Filing

    You know what no one out there likes? Potholes. They take over a stretch of local road and soon enough your alignment is off, your suspension is creaking, and you're blowing out tires and mending bent wheels. Potholes are the mosquitoes of the automotive world. CHECK OUT: The Inner Workings Of The...

  • Ford Patent Luminescent Body Panels
    Ford Looks To Patent Luminescent Body Panels

    It seems that the Ford Motor Company [NYSE:F] is looking for new ways to brighten your motoring experience. Patent applications discovered by Car and Driver show the automaker wants to create body panels that are capable of being lit up. There is a bunch of scientific/engineering style jargon you...

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