Ford is thinking inside the box.
That is to say, within the boxy confines of an SUV.
The automaker has applied for two patents covering innovative features that could show up on one of its vehicles someday.
The first is a single side-door that opens up to provide a wide access portal.
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Unlike the DeLorean sports car’s gullwing doors or the Tesla Model X’s “falcon wing” doors, it is mounted to four arms that pivot it open, rather than a hinge.
The asymmetrical door swings up and over the vehicle as the side rocker panel folds down to provide a step, according to the patent, which was first reported on by Motor 1.
A single traditional door provides access to the driver’s seat.
Ford has not confirmed that the design will ever be on a production vehicle, but the car depicted in the drawings shares its rectangle-shaped steering wheel with the recently unveiled 2024 Lincoln Nautilus.
At the 2016 New York Auto Show, Lincoln debuted a Navigator SUV concept that had traditional gullwing doors, but they were only meant to better show off its interior design and were never intended for production.
The patent drawings also depict the vehicle with a rear bench seat situated transversely along the side wall opposite the door and in front of a console.
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A separate patent published on the same day as the one for the door covers this design and explains that the table can be opened up to reveal a video screen.
The console is also equipped with a storage compartment in its base and can be moved forward and aft within the cabin.
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Ford does not comment on patents, so it is not clear if it is working on a new show car or a new model for showrooms, but either would be like no SUV it has ever made before.