RAC Cars News


New Toyota Intelligent Safety Technology

By raccars Published

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Toyota is focusing on intelligent safety technology in its upcoming releases, particularly the concept of cars which can communicate with each other and the surrounding environment. The Japanese firm claims it will have its new car to car and car to infrastructure systems in place for 2015.

Toyota has managed to advance its technology a step further than similar camera and radar based driver assistance systems offered by rival manufacturers. It operates via the Integrated Traffic Systems (ITS), wireless network, which is used to monitor congestion and the overall status of the road network. The same frequency allows the cars to communicate with other, nearby vehicles.

If you pull up to a junction and cannot clearly see the position of other traffic, the car's sensors come into play to identify approaching vehicles and pedestrians, displaying the information on the car's fascia, which is vehicle to infrastructure communication. Cars can also emit a kind of warning beacon, to allow drivers to avoid them, which is the vehicle to vehicle communication component.

The technology can also work in conjunction with radar cruise control systems, by using vehicle to vehicle communication to offer a more detailed picture of what the car ahead is doing and responding by maintaining a safe distance and with smoother and safer braking and acceleration. This is not only safer but also more fuel efficient. Toyota purports to be collaborating with governments and transport organisations, to be able to bring the technology to the roads sooner rather than later.

Toyota and Lexus models in the firm's domestic market are expected to be the first to be installed with the technology but Europe and the US can expect to follow very shortly after.

Toyota has also updated its LED adaptive headlights to offer automatic control of individual LEDs. The LED Array Adaptive High Beam allows the car to continue to offer maximum illumination of the road ahead, but reading any oncoming vehicle's position and size, to adjust exactly the correct LEDs to avoid dazzling the driver. This is a premium feature to be offered on higher specification models of Toyota and Lexus from next year.

The new systems are part of Toyota's Integrated Safety Management Concept, a programme designed to directly reduce the number of road accidents. A series of active safety packages called 'Safety Sense' will be rolled out for the global market by the end of 2017, including features tailored for the needs of different sized vehicles.

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