April 19, 2007

Buick to offer lane departure and blind zone warning systems

Detroit, Michigan – Buick has announced it will offer two new technologies that will warn drivers if they are inadvertently changing lanes or if a vehicle is in a blind spot. Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and Side Blind Zone Alert (SBZA) systems will be available on all 2008 Buick Lucerne sedan models in Canada and the U.S., starting this summer. The same technology will also be featured on the 2008 Cadillac STS and DTS sedans.

The lane departure system uses a camera located between the inside rearview mirror and the windshield to detect lane markings on the road, and alert drivers when they inadvertently stray from the lane. The side blind zone system uses radar sensors behind the rear fascia on both sides of the vehicle and is designed to help drivers avoid lane-change crashes with vehicles in the side blind zone.

When the LDW is engaged, a driver travelling at 56 km/h or more who crosses a detected lane marking without signalling is alerted by a flashing amber light in the fuel gauge, and by a chime of three beeps. The system does not steer the vehicle, and is designed only to alert drivers.

The SBZA system covers a zone of about one lane, or 3.5 metres, from both sides of the vehicle; it starts at each side mirror and goes back about 5 metres. When vehicles in the adjacent lanes enter the side blind zone, an amber symbol illuminates in the outside rearview mirror. Both systems can be turned on and off by the driver.

The two systems will be available together as an optional upgrade to Lucerne’s Driver Confidence Package, which includes remote start, rear park assist, heated washer fluid, StabiliTrak stability control and rain-sensing wipers.

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