General Motors partnered with the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute to study the real-world effectiveness of its various available active safety features and found that such systems are “making a statistically significant impact in helping to reduce crashes.”
To find out what kind of impact GM’s own active safety, driver assistance and adaptive lighting technologies are having on driver safety, the U of M compiled data from 3.7 million different GM vehicles from 2013-2017 and compared crash instances involving vehicles with and without active safety features. The automaker says the study “showed that certain features evaluated had an impact in preventing the types of crashes the features were designed to help prevent or mitigate,” and indicates such systems are helping to improve road safety.
Automatic Emergency Braking (or Forward Automatic Braking) with Forward Collision Alert is one of the most impressive technologies, as per the study’s findings, showing the potential to reduce rear-end striking crashes by 46%. A Rear Vision Camera can also raise driver awareness and reduce reverse crashes by 21%. If paired with a Rear Park Assist functionality, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and Reverse Automatic Braking respectively, the camera results in a 38%, 52%, and 81% reduction in backing crashes.
The study also found that Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning reduced lane departure-related crashes by 20% and Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert reduced lane change crashes by 26% in GM vehicles.
The publication of this study’s findings comes not long after GM CEO Mary Barra was quizzed over the company’s lack of standard active safety features on cheaper vehicles, such as those from its Chevrolet brand. Barra responded by saying the automaker wants to have it on more vehicles going forward, but also acknowledged there were some cost challenges involved.
Some entry level models, such as the 2019 Honda Civic, come standard with a suite of up-to-date active safety features and advanced safety technologies. The Honda Sensing package, standard across all Civic trim levels, includes a collision mitigation braking ,adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist and road departure mitigation.
Check out the full GM/University of Michigan study at this link.