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The state of the art in driver assistance technology

In just a few years, driver assistance systems have become essential on many car models. Explore this article to discover the most common systems, their functions and future prospects.

Voiture d'occasion

There are many advantages

Our worst enemies on the road are: ignorance of our vehicle's measurements, inattention and slow reaction times. Given that every driver is fallible, and that the majority of road accidents are the result of human error, driving aids become invaluable resources for considerably reducing the risk of accidents.

Driver assistance systems come in six levels:

Level 0 consists of warnings to the driver and possible resumption of control in the event of an emergency, such as anti-collision radar and emergency braking.

Level 1 offers continuous driving, braking and acceleration assistance, including lane centering control..

Level 2 offers partial automation, often with a combination of adaptive cruise control and lane keeping.

Level 3 allows autopilot driving, but requires human assistance when necessary, requiring the driver to remain vigilant.

Levels 4 and 5 represent automatic pilots, with the latter not even requiring human intervention.

Driving aids can help reduce accidents by 20-55%, according to official European statistics.

What are the most common systems?

Today, a wide range of devices provide daily assistance on the road. Although autonomous driving (levels 3, 4 and 5) is not yet widespread on the European market, level 0, 1 and 2 aids are widely present on many vehicles.

Emergency brake assist

The sudden appearance of an animal on the road can cause major damage to your vehicle and endanger its occupants. Fortunately, Emergency Brake Assist can anticipate such situations by temporarily regaining control of the vehicle to avoid serious consequences.

Parking assistance

Because we've all experienced the difficulties of parking in tight spaces, sensors and rear-view cameras are invaluable allies in preventing damage to your vehicle.

Blind spot sensor and collision-avoidance radar

Every vehicle has blind spots that increase the risk of collision with obstacles or other road users. These collision-avoidance and blind-spot detection systems spot obstacles that your eyes might miss.

Lane support

For drivers with a tendency to leave their lane, this system is essential. It alerts you when your vehicle changes lane without you having used your turn signals, for example by generating vibrations in the steering wheel. Lane centering automatically redirects your vehicle to the center of the lane.

Cruise control

Also known as "cruise control", it maintains a constant speed, even in the event of distraction. Cruise control goes a step further, adjusting your speed according to the distance between you and the car in front.

Some automakers even include specific features on their models, such as steep descent assistance.

When will we see fully automated driving?

Some manufacturers are planning to revolutionize the automotive landscape before their peers. For example, French company Navya has already developed autonomous electric shuttles that can carry up to 15 passengers.

And did you know that autonomous cabs have been circulating for several years in San Francisco (California) and Phoenix (Arizona)? Meanwhile, the Volvo brand has revealed its collaboration with the Chinese search engine Baidu to create autonomous electric cars specially designed for the Chinese market.

It's highly likely that automation will become the norm in the near future!

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