- Ford will feature its range of pet-friendly vehicles at WODAC
- Space and versatility a prime consideration when purchasing a vehicle to transport pets
- Smart technologies can ensure safer travel when driving with pets
PRETORIA, South Africa, 18 July, 2013 – Visitors to this weekend’s World of Dogs and Cats (WODAC) exhibition, which takes place at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand, will have the opportunity to view Ford’s range of pet-friendly vehicles.
Many people see their pets as part of the family, and having a car that allows people to travel with their furry friends can be an important consideration in a purchase decision. A few things car buyers that plan to travel with their pets should take into account are outlined below:
Room to move and good ventilation are key points to consider. Large SUVs like Ford’s Everest provide ample space for pets and people alike. The seven-seater SUV boasts second and third row air vents ensuring a pleasant environment for your pets while its side-hinged rear door opens up the tallest and widest cargo area in the class when the third row of seats is folded.
Granted, not everyone wants a large family dog like a Great Dane, but even if you have a Jack Russell, the accessories that come with an active dog often require you to have some space. Typically, you want to have enough room for your trusty side kick to stretch his legs, have a nap and change positions (particularly during long distance driving). However a smaller car can also accommodate your pet.
In hatchbacks like Ford’s Fiesta or Focus, your dog can safely be placed in the boot with the parcel shelf removed. If this is the case, make sure that you provide ventilation. If you’re a small dog owner, the Figo, with 284 litres of boot space and removable parcel shelf, is perfect for a mat, some toys and your furry friend. Remember, it’s always advisable to install a net that prevents your dog from jumping from the boot into the backseat; alternatively a crate or cage can be used, especially when transporting your feline friends.
Versatility is also a key consideration when choosing a vehicle suitable for transporting pets. The EcoSport, a new offering from Ford that will be launched in August, offers the space of an SUV but the practicality of a small hatch.
The EcoSport boasts versatile stowage configurations that include fold and tumble rear seats and a 60/40 rear split that allows enough space in the rear for a pet crate while still offering rear passenger seating.
Ford’s hands-free tailgate featured on the Ford Kuga takes practicality one step further. In order to open or close the tailgate, the operator simply needs to wave their foot under the rear bumper of the car with the key in their possession. This makes loading dog food or even a pet crate a breeze.
Another handy feature found on the Ford Kuga is the addition of metal trunk loops in the rear cargo space to aid dog owners in securing their pets. The dog’s leash can be fastened to the clip when the cargo door is open, keeping the pet from jumping out. In the event of an accident, this feature also protects all passengers in the vehicle, keeping pets securely in place.
While space and versatility seem to be obvious consideration when selecting a new car that can be used to transport pets, technology is often not high on the list of priorities. However smart features can make travelling with pets easier and ultimately safer.
Ford SYNC™, offered in the Ford Fiesta, Focus, EcoSport, Kuga and Transit, lets the driver use their mobile phone hands-free while driving. Making a phone call is as simple as pushing a button and saying someone’s name, ensuring the safety of both you and your precious pets.
Another useful feature is the rear-view parking sensor found on the Kuga. Often dogs run behind the car without the driver’s knowledge. The sensors may help alert the driver before there is an incident.
“When purchasing a new vehicle it’s important to consider all aspects of your daily routines. If pets are a big part of your lifestyle then be sure to consider their needs when shopping for a new car,” explains Ford Marketing Manager Gavin Golightly. “Also remember to discuss these requirements with your dealer in order to best understand the options as well as accessories that might be available,”
The Ford Transit, Everest, Kuga and the soon to be launched EcoSport will be on display on the Ford stand at WODAC this weekend.