The automotive leader patents a concept for autonomous cars with front seats that can face backward, opening up the cabin for work or play

Piggybacking on innovations in driverless cars, Ford has announced a patent application for a new passenger area featuring front seats that can turn to face backward. This gives the cabin a feel more similar to a family living room than the automobiles we’re used to riding in.

Ford looked to the past to develop designs for the future. In the 1950s, when the promise of jetpacks and driverless cars was brand-new and seemed inevitable, art depicting that future featured autonomous family vehicles with a full living-room set inside. Ford jettisoned the glass dome cockpits and other outmoded or unsafe trappings, but kept the basic concept of a visiting or work space in the car’s cabin, taking advantage of the possibilities available when nobody has to drive the car.

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