Ford patents drone that acts as autonomous car lookout

“The drone device is introduced to the vehicle system in order to extend the range at which the vehicle is about to obtain information on its surroundings beyond the range of any one or more sensors, visual systems and/or communications interfaces that may be onboard the vehicle,” the patent says. The patent also allows for the drone to accomplish delivery of items to and from the vehicle. In addition to a quad-copter or other flying device, the drone could be “a terrestrial model capable of land travel or a marine model capable of traveling on top or under water.”