The automobile industry has been through many changes over the past few decades. As new technology came up, the sector saw innovations that changed everything for consumers. One area that modern cars revolutionized is road safety.
Most of the features drivers enjoy today were only a dream 30-40 years ago. From headlights that adapt to the surroundings to guided driving, car safety features have come a long way. The use of onboard computers, AI and data analytics has especially contributed to safer driving conditions for many consumers. The following are top innovations that enhanced road safety.
Adaptive Lighting Systems
Lighting technology has come a long way to offer incredible functionalities to drivers. Smart and adaptive headlights are some features you will find in the latest vehicle models. The lights are designed to turn when the car does, thereby, improving illumination. They swivel to follow the steering wheel when it turns. Since your headlights don’t shine straight ahead, you get a better view of your surroundings, which enhances safety. The better illumination angle allows you to respond quickly if the situation requires it.
Advanced Driver Control Assistance (ADAS)
One way the automobile industry reduced crashes is with ADAS technology. Modern vehicles come with several features designed to prevent collisions. Adaptive cruise control (ACC) makes it easy for the driver to keep a safe distance between cars. ACC automatically matches your speed to that of the vehicle ahead. Some systems also integrate the GPS and use the information to decrease your car’s speed when approaching an exit or curve, hence, reducing the risk of getting into an accident.
Besides adjusting speed, ACC can bring a vehicle to a complete stop. Another element of this technology is automatic braking. Many manufacturers now build sensors that detect when a human being is near a vehicle, triggering brakes automatically. Blind spot intervention or lane-keeping assist is a function that activates the brakes if you attempt to switch lanes when another car is in your blind spot. Drivers not being able to see other users was a major cause of road accidents, particularly for large vehicles.
Cell phone use while driving is a leading cause of road accidents. We have seen numerous campaigns and regulations to deter phone use while on the wheel. The automobile industry responded by incorporating Bluetooth or hands-free functions in vehicles. If you must use your phone, you can do so without taking your hands off the steering. Some systems include voice activation, enabling you to speak commands and use your phone comfortably. Hands-free phone use reduces distractions, allowing you to concentrate on the road.
Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
Also called an electronic stability program, ESC assists drivers in maintaining control of their vehicles. The technology compares various inputs when you are driving, including steering, braking and acceleration, to see if they balance. If you veer off the expected direction, the system stabilizes your car. ESC decreases skidding, making the system invaluable on poor roads. It engages automatically to prevent over or under-steering. When driving on icy or wet roads, ESC provides better control, thus, reducing the chances of crashing.
Other Safety Technologies
Manufacturers today fit as much as they can in vehicles to improve safety and functionality. Some other features include pressure monitors. These systems alert you when tire pressure falls, ensuring you don’t endanger yourself and other road users. The heads-up display shows you the information you need about your vehicle without requiring you to take your eyes off the road. Cameras around your car let you see the back and sides when parking or backing out.
Technological innovations in the automotive sector changed how drivers handle different situations on the road. They reduce collisions by boosting awareness and response times. Although not all vehicles have the highlighted features, you can expect a few on the latest models.