Seat belts, airbags, and anti-lock brakes have long been protecting us from injury during car accidents. Now, advances in technology have enabled car manufacturers to develop the next generation in car safety, and the systems are chock full of clever features. Read on for a few exciting new developments.
Advanced Technology Is Already Here
Pre-collision braking systems are at the forefront of car safety enhancements. When equipped with one, a car can sense and reduce the severity of impact by tightening seat belts, audibly notifying the driver of the danger, and automatically applying the brakes. Many luxury brands already offer this technology, and companies like Honda will install the system across their full lineup in the next few years.
Lane-drift warning and prevention is another clever car safety feature available on many new cars today. Using complex laser technology, plus brakes and steering input when necessary, this feature can recognize when a car’s drifting across traffic lines and actively bring it back into the lane of traffic.
The blind spot warning system has quickly made its way into most new cars. It will intuitively flash a light in your side mirror when there’s a vehicle in your blind spot and alert you if you put on your signal indicator. One new feature that’s still fairly exclusive is the drowsiness warning system. As you drive, the system maps your steering, throttle, and brake inputs to establish a “regular” driving pattern. If you start driving drowsily according to the pre-determined mapping, the clever feature will encourage you to pull over and take a break.
The Very Near Future
Some manufacturers already offer wifi connectivity in their new cars, but soon it won’t be restricted to internet browsing; car companies like Ford are looking to use the technology to connect cars with one another to reduce collisions. By employing a system that allows cars to “talk” to one another, drivers are alerted if a vehicle is out of control or on a direct collision path. There’s even a program in the works that will enable traffic lights to talk to cars as well, warning them of a potentially dangerous situation ahead.
Airbags and seat belts were just the first in a long line of car safety features. The latest new technologies hint at even more advanced protective measures to come. We’ll keep you posted on those.
The DriverSide Team
Editor’s note: Advance Auto Parts carries a wide selection roadside safety kits, backup cameras, car alarm accessories and other quality auto parts to keep you safe and secure. Get more car ownership tips from our partners at DriverSide.