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Technology…. It becomes obsolete fast. What was fashionable last year could very well be rendered obsolete this year. What is trending today could very well go out of fashion tomorrow. But not auto safety technology for vehicles! This is futuristic technology, one that will be with us for a long time. Why? Because it is just starting. Today, auto safety technology, which was a preserve of a few high class vehicles, is fast becoming a norm for all vehicles.
You cannot understand where you are going if you do not understand where you are coming from..… That is what we say in Africa. Therefore, you cannot understand the future of auto safety technology if you do not know its past… well, maybe its most recent past.
For many years, vehicle safety was associated with crumple zones, front and side airbags, seat belts and so on. One thing that all these features had in common was that they were all designed to protect the motorist and the passengers from harm in case of a car crash. However, it is now different. The present and the future of auto safety technology is to add as many safety assist features as possible to PREVENT the crash from happening. Yes, cars are set to become very safe soon, with driver assist features that can take over the control of the car if the driver becomes drowsy on the highway… and so on.
Safety assist technologies
It is hard to define such features in one sentence. However, take the case scenario of the Mercedes Benz PRE-SAFE technology, where the vehicle is equipped to sense when an accident is inevitable and thus alerts the other safety features to prepare for a crash. This makes the crash less severe for the car, as well as for the motorist. Such moments when the car could be close to having an accident include during skidding and the system will tighten the seatbelts, close the sunroof and windows, adjust the restraints (head) for the front seats and generally make things a lot safer for the people riding in the car.
And then 2015 comes with the Subaru EyeSight system that not only acts as an extra pair of eyes to prevent crashes, but can also work on the brakes if it senses an almost imminent collision.
The drowsy detection systems warn the driver such that he/she cannot lapse into sleep while on the road. This is very helpful to drivers who drive long distances everyday with little rest. It could be a good system for vehicles in Africa where people give little regard to the allowed maximum driving hours. Did you know that drowsy-driving causes more road accidents annually than drunk driving?
Get a real time view of the road ahead of you at night with the Mercedes Benz Night View assist system. The headlights alone are not enough. You need more than an extra pair of eyes at night.
Other important safety assist technologies include ABS, lane departure warning, parking assist and so forth. Now…. Imagine all of these features in one car… that makes it very safe, no? Of course, these safety features raise the price of the vehicle, but it is better to pay more and arrive home safe than pay less and end up on a hospital bed, no?