The IntelliLux LED Matrix headlights will become more pertinent as the darkest time of the year arrives in the UK – as the British-built Vauxhall Astra offers the award-winning IntelliLux LED Matrix headlights which Vauxhall says could reduce the risk of an accident this winter.
“Last year there were over 900 reported night-time accidents in Great Britain in darkness hours that involved carriage way hazards,” said RAC spokesman Rod Dennis. “While this is nearly a nine per cent fall on 2010 figures, clearly a significant risk remains so technology such as Vauxhall’s new IntelliLux system that gives drivers more time to react is a major step forward. One and a half seconds, the extra reaction time these headlights allow, might not sound like a lot of time, but when traveling at speed it really could mean the difference between life and death.”
The headlights consist of 16 LED segments, eight on each side of the vehicle. The new matrix system, sourced from OSRAM-Sylvania, switches the high beam as soon as the vehicle exits an urban (dense) area, and then consistently adapts both the length and shape of the light cone for every traffic situation by using input from a front-mounted camera. The camera detects light sources from approach vehicles, and in turn the IntelliLux deactivates individual LEDs that would cause a blinding glare for the other drivers. This makes it a big safety feature for not just the drivers of the all-new Astra, but for fellow road users as well.
According to research conducted by the Darmstadt University of Technology, Germany and by the European LightSightSafety initiative shows that at speeds of 50 miles per hour, drivers with the full LED matrix systems see objects on the side of the road 30-40 meters earlier than drivers in vehicles equipped with conventional halogen or xenon lights. This translates into an additional 1.5 seconds to react to road hazards, according to research.
The GM Authority Take
We applaud Vauxhall and Opel for their innovative efforts, and really like that the IntelliLux isn’t just an improvement for the driver of the car but for fellow drivers as well. We wonder, then, if technology like this will become a standard feature for every road-legal automobile produced in the future. We certainly would like to see this tech make its way to the states, should legislation ever catch up with automotive lighting technology. Currently, LED matrix lights are only available in Europe due to legal red tape. Which means if a future Opel product plans on crossing overseas to sell as a Buick here in America, such as the 2017 Buick Encore, the technology will have to be left behind across the Atlantic in the meantime.