Electric power steering (EPS) specialist Nexteer Automotive has won another contract with Ford in the US.

The Tier 1 will supply its rack-assist electric power steering system to the 2011 model year Ford F-150 pickup truck as well as the Mustang, Ford's popular muscle car.
Still one of the biggest-selling models in the US, the F-150 is the first pickup to feature the technology, so far mainly associated with smaller vehicles. Adding the technology is said to reduce fuel consumption by an average of four percent compared to traditional hydraulic systems.

Nexteer’s global chief engineer Ted Seeger said: “The system in the Ford F-150 shows the potential for further applications of Nexteer’s technology in large vehicles. It handles the largest rack-loads of any EPS system today and offers heavier vehicles improved performance and fuel economy.”

EPS systems save fuel because the electric motor only draws power when the driver needs steering assistance; hydraulic systems draw power continuously from the engine. EPS can also be integrated with other on-board electronic controls to improve overall driving performance and safety. Nexteer is said to be in talks with European manufacturers regarding further applications of its technology.