The car industry is constantly looking for ways to make driving safer with the help of smart technology. In this article, Ian Cook takes a look at which tech can help you stay safe on the road.
We all want to be safe drivers, but safety isn’t something that lies entirely in our own hands. Your Motability car will also have a big part to play in taking you safely on all your motor journeys And with all of the advancements currently happening in the motoring industry, there’s no better time to check out the top 10 technologies for staying safe on the road in 2021.
1. Lane departure warnings
Lane warning systems help you avoid crashes due to you unintentionally leaving your lane. The systems detect lane markers and alert you when a tyre touches one of these, usually via a flashing indicator and/or beeps from the appropriate side of the vehicle. This technology is a huge benefit in motorway driving, where long distances and monotonous roads can lead to loss of attention.
2. Forward collision systems
These systems warn you of an impending collision by detecting stopped or slowly moving vehicles ahead of you. The technology uses radar, lasers, or cameras to scan the road ahead while you drive, with lights, beeps, vibrations of your seat, or a combination of these alerting you to danger ahead.
3. Blind spot detection
This is where a set of sensors mounted on the side mirrors or rear bumper detect vehicles in adjacent lanes. If the sensors detect something right next to you (in your mirror’s “blind spot”), the sensors alert you via an audible and/or visual warning. For example, if the car you’re driving detects a car right next to you when you’re about to change lanes, it can alert you enabling you to avoid a collision.
4. Adaptive headlights
One of the most important safety technologies are headlights that actively respond to changing conditions. Known as “adaptive headlights”, they automatically switch between low beam and high beam in the presence of traffic, meaning you don’t dazzle approaching drivers. In recent years, these headlights have become more widely available and are a great safety feature to have at your disposal for a safer ride.
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5. Electronic stability control
This system, known in the trade as “ESC”, is designed to automatically help stabilise your car when it detects a momentary loss of control, for example if you were to slip on ice. It comes on when you start your car and will activate when it detects you may be losing control of it.
6. Traction control systems
Traction control works by using wheel sensors to identify when one wheel is spinning significantly more than the other driven wheels. The car’s electronic control system will then take action to stop the wheel turning; the way it does this depends on how sophisticated and modern the car’s traction control system is. The car’s on-board computer will usually cut the engine’s power slightly, having the same effect as the driver taking their foot off the accelerator, but with the electronics reacting far faster than even the best driver.
7. Adaptive Cruise Control
In very basic terms, adaptive cruise control (ACC) refers to a system that helps vehicles maintain a safe following distance and stay within the speed limit. ACC adjusts a car’s speed automatically so that drivers don’t have to. It all sounds a bit futuristic but is gradually being incorporated into new cars and has the potential to be an impressive safety feature. In many ways it’s a logical extension of cruise control, as its name suggests.
8. Cross-traffic alert
A cross-traffic collision warning system is something that tells the driver if another vehicle is approaching from either front or back when their vehicle is in reverse and is backing out of a parking space.
9. LED headlights
LED headlights are super-bright white and vastly improve night-time visibility. They are super-efficient, run cooler, and typically last 20,000 hours, or 2-3 years. A growing number of Motability cars are now fitted with them.
10. Voice control/Bluetooth
In very simple terms voice control/ Bluetooth lets you play music, make phone calls and more from your Bluetooth-connected device while keeping your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road. It’s simple, safe and a must-have for any modern driver.
Whatever your choice when it comes to cars, Motability will have everything you need. Search through the full range of models available to lease through the hassle and worry-free Scheme and find your nearest dealer to find the perfect car for you! Finally, it’s worth remembering that Motability provides insurance cover, servicing, MOT and breakdown cover for every car provided through the scheme.