Ten automakers have committed to making automatic emergency braking (AEB) a standard feature on all new vehicles built, according to a joint statement from the U.S. Department of Transportation, its National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Many of the cameras integral to AEB require calibration once a windshield has been replaced.
AEB systems use on-vehicle sensors such as radar, cameras or lasers to detect an imminent crash, warn the driver and, if the driver does not take sufficient action, engage the brakes, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.
The 10 automakers are Audi, BMW, Ford, General Motors, Mazda, Mercedes Benz, Tesla, Toyota, Volkswagen and Volvo. They will work with IIHS and NHTSA in the coming months on the details of implementing this technology on new models, including the timeline for making AEB a standard feature.
“We are entering a new era of vehicle safety, focused on preventing crashes from ever occurring, rather than just protecting occupants when crashes happen,” says U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “But if technologies such as automatic emergency braking are only available as options or on the most expensive models, too few Americans will see the benefits of this new era. These 10 companies are committing to making AEB available to all new-car buyers.”
Automatic emergency braking includes a range of systems designed to address the large number of crashes, especially rear-end crashes, in which drivers do not apply the brakes or fail to apply sufficient braking power to avoid or mitigate a crash.
“The evidence is mounting that AEB is making a difference,” say Adrian Lund, IIHS president. “Most crashes involve driver error. This technology can compensate for the mistakes every driver makes because the systems are always on alert, monitoring the road ahead and never getting tired or distracted.”
Several studies, including a recent report from IIHS, show that AEB technology can reduce insurance injury claims by as much as 35 percent. The 10 manufacturers committing to across-the-board AEB represented 57 percent of U.S. light-duty vehicle sales in 2014.
In January, NHTSA announced its proposal to add automatic emergency braking to the list of recommended advanced safety features included in its New Car Assessment Program. In May, Foxx announced a series of steps DOT and NHTSA will take to accelerate the development of advanced safety technologies such as vehicle-to-vehicle communications and autonomous driving.
“Secretary Foxx’s direction to NHTSA is clear: We must work to expedite the implementation of advanced technologies to save lives at every opportunity,” says NHTSA administrator Mark Rosekind. “These 10 manufacturers have committed to an important principle: AEB is a life-saving technology that should be available to every vehicle owner. In the months ahead, NHTSA will work closely with IIHS and the auto industry to carry out that commitment, and we encourage every other manufacturer to join this effort.”
In order for a vehicle to earn IIHS’s highest safety award, ‘Top Safety Pick’, IIHS requires the vehicle to have an automatic braking system.
“General Motors supports the call for a voluntary industry safety agreement that would lead to making forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking standard on light vehicles,” says Jeff Boyer, GM vice president of global vehicle safety. “Both technologies are available today on dozens of 2016 model Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac models. Thirty-seven models are available with forward collision alert—accounting for more than 1 million vehicles on the road—and 19 models offer both forward collision alert and automatic emergency braking. GM today offers 22 different crash-avoidance technologies on vehicles sold in the U.S., from entry-level Chevrolet models to the upcoming Cadillac CT6.”
To learn more about the camera calibration required with these AEB systems after windshield replacement, look for the September/October edition of AGRR™ magazine.