DVN: Thorsten, you are in charge of lighting engineering at Ford Europe. What are your education, your different jobs, and your experience in lighting?
Thorsten Warwel: I have been studying in Germany Duisburg University (mechanical engineering). After that I worked 9 years at Visteon, developing lights, mainly for German OEMs, including international assignments. Since 2008 I am working for Ford, leading the global core lighting engineering organisation .
DVN: Under your influence, Ford is becoming one of the leaders in lighting innovation. Could you give us some info on the Ford's advanced lighting features?
TW: We are pursuing all known AFS features, from an entry level cornering function to a high level full AFS headlamp, dependent on the region and the car segment. You will see a lot in the near future from Ford.
DVN: An increasing number of European Ford models are being adapted for sale in the North American market. What possibilities do you see for advanced Ford lighting to arrive intact on North American models?
TW: The North American market is very interested in more advanced lighting features, but we have to work through the legal limitations we are currently facing, to realize those technologies on the road.
DVN: Automatic high/low beam switching driven by a multifunction camera will improve comfort and safety, by allowing drivers to use much more the high beams. Have you already introduced this technology in Ford cars?
TW: Yes, we do have this technology already on the road in the new Mondeo, S-Max and Galaxy, as well in the new Focus (2011) and Lincoln. This feature is even combined with “Traffic sign recognition”, “Lane departure warning” and “Attention assist”. Other cars will follow.