December 4, 2006
Volvo announces City Safety collision avoidance system
Goteborg, Sweden – Volvo Cars has announced its new City Safety, a system that it says will help drivers avoid low-speed collisions common in urban traffic and slow-moving traffic jams. The company plans to introduce the system on the market within the next two years.
If the vehicle in front suddenly brakes, and the City Safety senses that a collision is likely, it will pre-charge the brakes. However, if the system senses that a collision is imminent, the car will automatically brake. The system is active at up to 30 km/h.
City Safety uses an optical radar system, integrated into the windshield at the height of the rearview mirror; it monitors vehicles that are up to six metres in front of the car. Based on the distance to the object in front, and the car’s own speed, the system runs a calculation 50 times per second to determine what braking speed is necessary to avoid a collision; it helps avoid or reduce the consequences of a collision by automatically activating the car’s brakes, or by auto braking and switching off the throttle. The system works equally well by day or night, although the windshield must be kept clear of ice, dirt or snow, and will warn if the sensor is blocked.
The company has already introduced a Collision Warning and Brake Support on the Volvo S80, which alerts the driver via audible and visual signals if the gap to the car in front is being reduced too quickly.