One of the issues with traditional running board design is the need to take ground clearance into consideration. Mount the board too high and it's not very useful. Mount it too low and run the risk of scraping obstacles that the truck would otherwise be able to overcome easily. Electric running boards solve this problem by deploying only when the truck's doors are open. This allows the board to come down much further than a standard design, sometimes as much as 10 inches. Close the door and the board folds up against the vehicle, maintaining ground clearance at stock levels.