This Ford Patent Could Revolutionize Tailgating and Camping

Practical drawbacks may keep Ford’s new patent from ever hitting production, but that won’t stop your base-camp bliss.

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Ford patents many inventions. Not all of them — such as this SUV cargo-area conveyor belt — seem bound for production. But this Ford video projector patent, first uncovered by The Drive, could revolutionize tailgating and camping.

Per the patent, Ford would mount the video projector on the liftgate. When the liftgate is open, the projector would be able to display video outside the vehicle. The patent also shows the system doubling as a floodlight.

This setup would be ideal for tailgating. The primary drawback to attending a football game is missing other potentially more important games. A built-in projector would save the time, space and hassle required for wiring up an elaborate flatscreen TV setup. Being able to screen Netflix and kids’ movies would doubtlessly make the family camping trip progress more smoothly, too.

However, some practical drawbacks may keep it from appearing in production cars. The cost could be substantial. Video projectors themselves are not cheap items. Even an “affordable” one can run more than $1,000. The logistics of placing sophisticated video equipment in the liftgate could be daunting. It’s an area constantly jostled by opening and closing and would be a likely space to get damaged during an accident.

Car companies add accessories when they turn a profit and require minimal effort. Ford trying to implement this liftgate video projector in production models may be too much of a rabbit hole to work.

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