Self-driving cars are gaining more attention in the media lately, but they're a long ways away from being made available to the mainstream public. Instead, what's available now is various collision warning technology. These systems can help prevent any accidents from occurring and can make the overall driving experience far less stressful. Also referred to as crash prevention systems, many consumers may be wondering just how reliable they actually are. So if you're on the fence about purchasing a vehicle with collision warning technology, the following guide can help you make an educated decision. Here are the various technologies that are available:
Forward Collision Warning
Forward collision warning systems are becoming much more common. They utilize a combination of laser beams, cameras, and/or radars to create a virtual map of what's in front of the vehicle. If there's an object in front of the vehicle and the driver is not reacting appropriately, a warning will sound. It also can apply the brakes to either slow down the vehicle considerably or to bring it to a full stop. This is known as auto-braking technology.
Active Blind Spot Detection
Ah, the dreaded blind spot. Active blind spot detection systems have been developed to tackle this problem, as they use many of the same methods as forwarding collision warning technology to see if there are any objects in the driver's blind spot. If the driver turns on his or her signal to change lanes, for example, this technology will create a warning sound if another car is in the blind spot. It can even prevent the car from moving to the other lane if the driver doesn't adjust accordingly.
Lane Departure Warning
Lane departure warning is a system that is similar to blind spot detection. It works by using cameras to note the lanes on a road. If the driver zones out or, worse yet, falls asleep when driving and the car starts swerving to the other lane, the lane departure warning system will create an alert. This is usually a combination of sound and vibration. Some of the more advanced systems even have the ability to move the vehicle back into the correct lane. If the warning system started by mistake, the driver always has the option to override it by taking control of the wheel.
Adaptive headlights have the ability to detect the speed and direction of the vehicle and can move the headlights by as much as 15 degrees. Highly useful during the night, some adaptive headlights can also change the brightness of the headlights. If a driver is turning a sharp corner, having adaptive headlights can help a driver to better spot a deer or other objects that may be in front of it.
Collision warning technology can save your life. While they used to be available mainly in luxury vehicles, lower priced models are now offering them as add-on options. You should highly consider purchasing a vehicle with these technologies in the future. Your first priority should always be the safety of your passengers and yourself.