By Kelsey Mays on July 19, 2012
The redesigned 2013 Escape can hold 56,778 pingpong balls, claims Ford. The automaker now uses the balls — they measure a little more than 2 cubic inches apiece — to assess interior volumes for oddly shaped areas like glove compartments or center consoles, which is to say just about every storage compartment inside a car. Ford says pingpong balls are a more accurate way to measure oddly shaped compartments than measuring tape, provided an extra calculation accounts for the open space between the balls. Ford also uses a laser scanner that renders three-dimensional spaces inside its vehicles and competing vehicles; the automaker then scans items from iPads to bicycles to ensure they fit. Here's hoping Ford can improve the space equation: Cramped confines hurt the Focus in Cars.com's compact-car Shootout, and Ford’s subcompact Fiesta sibling had similar issues in a separate comparison.
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Senior Consumer Affairs Editor Kelsey Mays likes quality, reliability, safety and practicality. But he also likes a fair price. Email Kelsey