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Ford will fit auto emergency brakes on two 2019 models

Better late than never.

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Ford always seems to be on the back foot when it comes to vehicle innovation -- it only began working on a robotics team last year, for example. Now the brand is playing catch-up again, announcing plans to install automatic emergency brakes as standard on two key 2019 models, which is something its rivals have been doing for a while.

The brakes, designed to help drivers avoid collisions, will be fitted on Ford's redesigned 2019 Edge midsize crossover and its 2019 Ranger midsize pickup. The Edge also offers a range of new optional safety features, including automatic steering assist and a revamped cruise control system.

According to the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, four out of 20 carmakers installed these kinds of brakes on at least half of their US models in 2017. They can be found on 56 percent of Toyota's fleet, compared to less than 10 percent of Ford's.

Twenty brands have pledged to fit all of their new passenger vehicles with automatic emergency brakes by September 2022, but Ford has so far kept its own plans, if any, quiet. Raj Nair, president of the company's North American operations, has only said that Ford intends to be "more aggressive" in standardizing safety features.

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