Those in the market to purchase a new car should take advantage of the latest safety driving innovations available, not limited to a record number 10 air bags in the Chevrolet Cruze.
Electronic stability control – The transition from passive to active drive control, where the car reacts to your driving behavior, is led by electronic stability control. Disasters are averted with automatic braking, and emergency handling once your car loses control. Within electronic stability control are rollover protection systems to protect against sharp turns or adaptive cruise control to adjust braking, throttle, and seat belt tightness at erratic traffic speeds. This popular feature has been known to reduce crashes by up to 80%
Rear view cameras and night vision – Poor visibility can be assisted with rear view cameras which use tilting side mirrors in conjunction with your navigation system to provide a wide angled view of activity going on behind you. Adaptive headlights turn on curves to give you a better view of the side of the road using electronic sensors that detect steering, speed, and elevation angles, for up to a 30 degree range of movement. The 2011 Audi S5 (starting at $36,000) has recently incorporated this feature to positive reviews.
Some cars, like the 2009 Infiniti FX35 ($42,000) even offer 360 degree views using its Around View Monitoring system where four wide angle cameras are placed around the car to give the driver a split screen view on his navigation of everything around him.
Accident response systems – Emergency response systems act as your hands in emergency situations, shutting off fuel, unlocking doors, and turning on interior lights once airbags are activated. Some accident response systems call emergency response centers at GM Onstar or BMW Assist to provide location information. This is also known as telematics or after crash technology.
Airbags – With more than 20,000 lives saved by front airbags in the past decade (source: NHTSA), the latest airbags innovations include occupant sensitive airbags that deploys based on the seat belts angle, seating position, and size of the passenger.