Gearheads and car owners alike revel in the gimmick. Ngai’s Theory of the Gimmick found that in the workplace individuals find gimmicks intimidating. Saving labor they threaten people’s jobs by reducing the opportunity to sell one’s labor.
But in the automotive world, the gimmick is less intimidating. Offering the opportunity to share your prized vehicle with your friends and family gimmicks helps to justify our outlandish car purchases. Take for example launch control of ludicrous mode in a Tesla, ridiculous, but it doesn’t matter when you make your friends giggle.
Sports exhaust systems offer the chance to say to your friends, “listen to this”. Other gimmicks get a bit more mundane like illuminating the floor at night or the way the lights flash when you unlock the car. According to the United States Patent Office, back in 2020, Ford filed to protect a gimmick that protects distance-activated revving.
Ford continues to show that they’ll let us hoon in whatever way like.
What Is Remote Controlled Engine Revving?
The patent outlines that the engine revs to a “peak speed according to a target revving sequence in response to a user-initiated command”. Ford achieves this through a method other than pressing the accelerator pedal.
A command could come from the user, meaning the driver by either a button on a key or perhaps even a voice-activated command. Numerous manufacturers have offered the ability to turn on your car remotely. Allowing a driver to warm up their engine, heat the cabin on a cold winter’s day, or perhaps even locate the car through its lighting.
Ford’s patent claims that the system at first turns the car on and leaves the engine idling. Receiving a second signal the engine proceeds to rev to a peak speed that’s controlled by the user’s input device. More than likely just shy of the red line. There’s another system hiding in this patent as well, on receiving an input from the user’s device the speakers can also emit a sound of the user’s choice. This certainly sounds like retaliation to the custom horns featured on Teslas.
Now a system that allows a user to rev their engine remotely would have a genuine use case. An owner forgets where they parked, revs the engine, and finds the screaming motor that bounces of the rev limiter and creates a series of pops and bangs. Or more likely, shows their friends what their car sounds like. Be that parked on a driveway, annoying the neighbors, or in a car meet and join the beautiful cacophony of exhaust notes.
What Is The Point Of Remote Controlled Engine Revving?
Quite frankly there isn’t a point. Audi’s latest models have a rev limiter when stationary to reduce the loutish behavior that many who drive the brand’s performance models achieve. This forms part of a wider cut down on loud cars. Over in Europe cars must soon produce a maximum of 68 decibels. For Ford to design a system that goes against these movements seems surprising.
Although patented two years ago it seems unlikely that the company may not use this. When the Ford Focus RS launched with Drift mode back in 2016, which essentially boiled down to a dynamic torque vectoring system, caused a tabloid-fueled scandal the world over. A system that allows users to rev their engines outside their car would eventually meet similar scorn.
Drift modes have grown in popularity over the past years with the likes of the Audi RS3 now receiving them. But with little scandal occurring it seems that these modes have not broken the infrastructure of the country. That’s because they’re gimmicks and people don’t really use them. If Ford brought this system to their cars, it’s largely the same.
What Cars Would Receive Remote Controlled Engine Revving?
Ford makes no secret that their internal combustion-engined cars are not long for the world. According to Ford, they’re investing $22 billion in electrification through 2025. The brand plans to go all-electric by 2030. Thus cars that actually rev won’t be here for very long. Ford’s different divisions produce various performance models. In the United Kingdom, the hot hatch reigns king. The Ford Focus and Fiesta STs have quite raucous exhaust notes. With the likes of the RS and Fiesta ST200, the brand produces special versions with regularity. It makes perfect sense for remote revving to act as the company’s last run-out internal combustion engine vehicles. But that raises the question of how it would pass the strict engine noise regulations across the pond.
Over in the United States, it makes perfect sense that the final V8 Mustangs would receive the most obnoxious exhausts possible. Rumors suggest that the next-generation Mustang will launch in 2023 and sell until the governments of the world come for all of our keys. Fitting remote revving to say the final Shelby Mustang to leave Ford’s factory will surely garner plenty of attention in both the press and at a car meet. Perhaps Ford might also leave us with another Ford GT that an owner can rev the life out of at car shows.