Volvo's 'City Safety' Technology Can Stop Accidents Before They Happen

Volvoxc90VolvoThe all-new Volvo XC90 SUV.

The best way to prevent accidents is obviously to avoid letting them happen.

Volvo, long noted for safety, has taken this idea to heart.

Debuting as part of the newly redesigned XC90, the company has introduced a suite of auto-braking technology enhancements is called “City Safety.”

According to Volvo, the tech is meant to stop accidents before they happen. Though automatic-braking systems are nothing new in car safety technology, Volvo has expanded the technology in new directions, including automatic braking in intersections, a world first.

No, the car won’t automatically stop at red lights. Instead, the system will automatically stop the car when it senses an oncoming car after the driver attempts to turn left (or right for right-handed countries) across traffic.

“Our studies of accident data from this accident type show that an important number of these crashes could have been avoided or mitigated if the turning vehicle had been equipped with auto brake,” Volvo Senior Technical Safety Specialist Lotta Jakobsson said in a statement.

The system will activate at speeds higher than 2.5 mph. Volvo estimates that accidents can be completely avoided if the speed difference between the vehicles on a collision course is lower than 31 mph for cars or 28 mph for pedestrians and cyclists, which the system can also detect and stop for.

City Safety works by using a combination of radar and camera units, mounted on the rear view mirror. Exposure control and a smarter camera allows the system to also operate at nighttime, where driver visibility is often hampered.

Volvo City SafetyVolvoA rendering of how the City Safety technology detects and assesses threats.

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