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Old 09-19-2003, 03:43 PM   #1
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2001 Focus

Does anyone know if the 2001 model has a speed sensor with the air bag? So when it has an impact and the air bags are deployed, it records the actual speed the driver was going.

Thanks in advance,

Rich


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Old 09-19-2003, 08:12 PM   #2
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I have recently learned (and was not aware of previously) that newer model vehicles have a feature built-in to the ECU that records a number of things that go on with the car, such as the highest speed the vehicle has been driven, what electrical parts have been removed and replaced, how many times the battery has been disconnected, etc. I did a quick internet search of "Ford Focus speed sensor" and it came up with this:

New-Cars.com - Ford Focus

Here is the part of it that relates to your question:


"Safety and Security
The Ford Focus emphasizes safety, with such standards as electronic crash severity sensor, three-point seatbelts, driver depowered air bag, passenger depowered air bag, and driver's seat position sensor. The list continues with child seat anchors and tethers, front and rear crumple zones, side impact door beams, and an interior emergency trunk release that glows in the dark. Side impact air bags are available as an option."

Since the Focus has not really changed since its introduction, the basic ECU programming is pretty much the same on all models, so even tho this write-up is about the 2002, it should apply to the 2001 also. I am assuming that since the ECU records the severity of the crash, that it would have to record the forward speed at the time of impact as one of the readings to accomplish this. I don't know how you would go about getting this info out of the ECU, but I'm sure your local dealer may be able to help you. If not, go to a different dealer, you will eventually find one that will cooperate with you.

Hope this helps.
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Old 09-19-2003, 08:56 PM   #3
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funny this is posted. Just last week there was an article in the local paper about this very subject. Aparently car manufactures are puting "black boxes" in there cars so they can find out the parameters of a crash so they can have defence in court that there product is sound. Possible example: someone was doing 108 in there focus and hit a stationary object. Can the car be expected to keep ocupants alive in that kind of crash? The article went on to say that GM (Gods mistake) gets more info from these devices than Ford. They don't record for long.. like maybe the last 5 seconds of operation according to the article I read.


Just curious... why do you want to know?
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Old 09-19-2003, 09:10 PM   #4
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Well, this post got my curiosity up and running. I did a little more searching, and it turns out, as you stated, that GM has been putting these black boxes into almost all of their vehicles since 1994. Ford, on the other hand, has only installed them on its 2000 and newer models.

Here is an interesting article on it, that pretty much explains the whole idea: Crash Data Recorders

This type of information can be very handy in a lawsuit situation following an accident (well, depending on which side of the lawsuit you are on... LOL)
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Old 09-19-2003, 10:29 PM   #5
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I was in an accident which involved a focus. The officer at the scene is blaming me totally but I believe the other driver is at fault. If he was speeding I can show the pr!ck up. I wonder if code readers could pull the information I seek. I also wonder if you can remove the "little black box" and bring it to a dealer seperately.
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Old 09-19-2003, 10:36 PM   #6
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Nope, a code reader will not pull this info. The "black box", and probably the ECU will have to be sent off. This is an excerpt from the above link:

"Event Data Recorder downloads are completed by factory trained technicians at Harris Technical Services. The technician is also a fully qualified traffic accident reconstructionist. It is important the downloaded information and the physical evidence be considered as a whole and the data between the recorder and the physical evidence be compared before coming to any conclusions."

SOOOO... This is not something that just anyone can do. I am not even sure that the Ford dealership could do it, the more that I read up on the subject. That, plus the fact that you cannot have access to the other person's vehicle without permission, so there is no way you'd be able to get the required parts off the car. That's slightly against the law.
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Old 09-20-2003, 06:24 PM   #7
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Well, I was going to speak with the insurance about that if it went to court. I wouldnt go and rip out parts of other's cars.
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