Ford Focus Adds Parental Controls to the Family Car

New MyKey System Curbs Distractions, Reckless Driving

BOSTON, MASS (06/15/2010)(readMedia)-- Just in time for summer, Ford has announced that its new MyKey Safety System is a standard feature on the 2010 Ford Focus. This first-ever safety system enables the car to identify teen drivers through customized car keys and apply specific functions that encourage safe, responsible driving.

Jeff Klein, General Sales Manager of Greater Boston Ford dealer Thomas Ford, sees tremendous benefits for parents and teens in the new technology.

"Any parent who worries about what teens will do on their own in a car needs to see this system in action. It's the next best thing to having a parent in the passenger seat," said Klein. "If their child is driving off in a MyKey-equipped Focus, parents can rest easy knowing that they're taking concrete steps towards ensuring the safety of their inexperienced driver."

MyKey builds off the SYNC feature in new Ford models that identifies each driver using a computer chip in the key. With MyKey enabled, parents can choose to limit the Ford Focus' top speed to 80 mph, set audio alerts when the car reaches 45, 55 and 65 mph, and prevent teens from disabling built-in safety features such as the traction control system.

To further encourage safe driving, the Focus mutes the sound system until seat belts are fastened. Furthermore, the top volume of the sound system is limited to 44% of the highest possible volume, reducing distractions for young drivers.

Teens may have reservations about the safety features, but parents overwhelmingly support them. In a survey conducted by Harris Interactive for Ford Motor Company, 75% of parents liked the speed-limiting feature and 72% approved of the seat-belt reminder. Half of the parents surveyed said they would allow their teens more driving time in a MyKey-equipped Ford.

"We want to make sure that the new generation of Massachusetts Ford drivers knows how to handle a car safely and with courtesy," Klein said. "This is especially the case around Boston, where there are plenty of driving distractions. Teens might feel like MyKey is limiting their freedom at first, but they will be happy to have it if it means more time on the road."

Drivers with a junior operator's license in Massachusetts may even find that MyKey helps them avoid trouble with police. A speeding ticket in Massachusetts includes a 90-day license suspension, a $500 fine and mandatory driver retraining for a first offense. Failure to wear a seat belt adds a $25 fine for each person in the car who is unbuckled.

Ford plans to make the MyKey Safety System standard equipment on more of its models in the near future. Thomas Ford expects the new Ford Focus with MyKey to arrive in a couple weeks to their Greater Boston Ford dealership.

About Thomas Ford:

Thomas Ford, located in Beverly MA, has been a fixture in the North Shore of Massachusetts for over 40 years. They base their success on their dedicated sales staff and service department, both of whom are committed to ensuring their customers' satisfaction. It's never been a better time to be a Ford owner, and Thomas Ford encourages you to stop by their dealership to discover why. For more information, call them at 1-800-910-1082, visit their website at, or visit their dealership at 211 Rantoul Street, Beverly, MA.