Almost all automakers offer some sort of driver aids that allow for some level of assisted driving, from adaptive cruise control to automatic parking systems.
There is some hesitation among the public about the future of self-driving cars; A survey by Autolist states that most buyers are divided about whether having self-driving capability on a vehicle makes it safe. Thankfully, actual automated driving vehicles are still years away. But given that nearly every new car on sale today comes standard or is available with some level of driver-assistance technology, it’s best to stay informed about what these features actually do and whether you can go extra for them. would like to pay.
The actual function of ADAS is the same among automakers, but the mixed messages and confusing names do not explain how the vehicles compare. Edmunds is here to help break down what these terms really mean and what some of these systems can do.
adaptive cruise control
Adaptive cruise control can adjust your speed to maintain a constant distance between your vehicle and the car in front. Some systems can bring a vehicle to a complete stop and accelerate again when traffic begins to move. Others can also react to traffic signals and set the speed accordingly. Some manufacturer names you may come across include Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (Toyota), Smart Cruise Control (Hyundai), and Intelligent Cruise Control (Nissan).
automatic emergency braking
Automatic emergency braking with forward collision warning can alert you if a front impact is imminent and your vehicle’s brakes if you do not respond in time. Along with adaptive cruise control, there are a number of names that automakers use to refer to automatic emergency braking. These include Collision Mitigation Braking System (Honda), Forward Collision Mitigation (Mitsubishi) and Collision Prevention Assist Plus (Mercedes-Benz).
Some of the more advanced systems include features such as Evasive Steering Assist, which enhances the forward collision mitigation system and can help steer the vehicle to avoid collisions.
Lane-Keeping Assist can help steer your vehicle back into its lane if it starts drifting over the lane marker. Drivers may feel a small tug on the wheel as well as see a warning that the vehicle is not staying in its lane. Various names include Active Steering Assist (Mercedes-Benz) and Intelligent Lane Intervention (Nissan). A lane-departure warning system only alerts you to exit your lane and cannot take any corrective action.
Super Cruise and Autopilot
General Motors’ Super Cruise and Tesla’s Autopilot are some of the most advanced driver-assistance systems available. Super Cruise was the first hands-free system to hit the market, although it currently only works on highways. In addition to adjusting speed with adaptive cruise control, Super Cruise can change lanes for you. You still have to be ready to take charge at any time, and the car monitors the driver to make sure he’s paying attention to the road.
Autopilot works largely the same, although at the moment it does not allow hands-free driving even with so-called full self-driving capability. When using the Navigate feature on Autopilot, Tesla will suggest lane changes and can automatically steer your vehicle toward the appropriate highway exit. Tesla is also phasing in camera-based driver monitors because its current monitoring system can be easily bypassed.
Other driver-assistance systems
Automated parking systems allow parking lots to be entered with little or no driver intervention. These systems also work with parallel parking. Many cars today have automatic high beams that use sensors to automatically turn the high beams on and off. Surround-view or 360-degree cameras can show a top-down view of a vehicle, which can be helpful when parking. Some newer trucks have trailer assist systems that can assist when hooking up the trailer or help reduce sway when towing.
What else should I know?
Many automakers bundle these systems in suits or packages under the same alias. Names include Nissan Propilot Assist, Toyota Safety Sense, Honda Sensing and Mazda i-ActivSense.
EDMUNDS SAYS: Advanced driver-assist systems are making their way into more and more new cars, although no car is truly self-driving today. Knowing how they work and the general terminology is important for any car buyer today.
This story was provided to The Associated Press by the automotive website Edmunds.
Where are our self driving cars? Adaptive cruise systems are not created equal