The European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) has given Opel‘s Side Blind Spot Alert (SBSA) its Advanced Reward for demonstrating “a scientifically proven safety benefit for consumers and society.”
Euro NCAP is an independent organization that organizes crash-tests and provides motoring consumers with a realistic assessments of cars sold in Europe. Opel developed SBSA to warn drivers from hidden dangers when changing lanes, turning a corner, or when other vehicles overtake yours. It’s especially relevant because 10 percent of all serious accidents and five percent of traffic-related fatalities in the European Union are the result of such accidents.
“The Euro NCAP award is confirmation of our strategy to optimize the safety of our cars based on real-life traffic and collision scenarios. Internal studies show just how much the Side Blind Spot Alert increases overall safety. A high market penetration of the system throughout Europe could help reduce all accidents with minor and severe injuries by around one percent,” said the Director of Vehicle Safety Integration, Günther Schmall.
Available for Opel Adam, Corsa, Astra, Cascada, Zafira Tourer models (and soon the Opel Karl and Vauxhall Viva), SBSA scans lateral traffic via four ultrasonic sensors; for the Insignia, radar technology allows for a scan of a wider area. If the electronic “guardians” pick up an object that may signify a collision, a high-intensity LED appears in the respective side mirror − it cannot be missed even with a blinding sun. SBSA works from about 6 to 86 mph (6 to about 125 mph for the Insignia).
Opel recently surveyed Insignia owners about SBSA, most of whom were delighted with the feature. In fact, 97.2 percent said they never switch the system off, with another 87 percent expressing that they were completed convinced by the functionality. Plus, 82 percent said that they would definitely order it again when buying a new car. For a bit over $600, that’s a bargain.