Ford outlines five bad driving habits that technology can beat
Taking a look at five driving habits, Ford Middle East highlights the features that the manufacturer has incorporated into its vehicles to help guard against them
For many Middle East drivers, driving is a necessity that links home with business and recreation. Driving can also be a source of stress or serve to provide relief from the daily grind, but either way, time spent on the road is also a time for vigilance, and just a moment’s distraction can be disastrous.
Technology, however, can help drivers stay on the straight and narrow. Here, Ford Middle East outlines five driving habits, and the features that Ford incorporate to help guard against them.
Speeding is a habit that endangers a great deal of lives annually. With Ford MyKey, an industry-first technology, owners can limit their top speed, as well as prevent deactivation of driver assistance technologies when others are driving the vehicle.
Ford’s Adaptive Cruise Control also helps drivers to keep their speed in check. Drivers set the speed they want to drive at and the system maintains it. If the vehicle’s built-in radar sensor detects traffic ahead, it will slow the vehicle down to maintain a pre-set distance. Once the road ahead clears, the vehicle will accelerate back up to the driver’s chosen speed.
Unintentional lane drifting and last-second decision-making are also key contributors to dangerous driving, and one of the leading causes of crashes in the region. Ford’s Lane-Keeping system can helps to avoid this. When the system is on, an icon appears on the instrument panel to alert the driver of the vehicle’s lane status.
In ‘Alert’ mode, the system sends three short vibrations to the steering wheel to notify drivers that they are drifting out of their lane. In ‘Aid’ mode, the system provides steering assistance to direct the driver to steer the vehicle back into the lane. Using data from the Lane-Keeping system, the Driver Alert System can then detect signs of driver fatigue and provide a warning on the instrument cluster.
The failure to maintain a safe distance between vehicles is another leading cause of crashes in the region, and Ford’s Forward Collision Warning with Brake Support can help rectify this, by alerting the driver when there is a high probability of an imminent front-end collision. The system prepares the brakes and will also help to apply them fully if the driver applies the brakes aggressively.
Active City Stop is an advanced feature that helps avoid or reduce the severity of low-speed collisions that can additionally detect vehicles that may have stopped unexpectedly and automatically apply a vehicle’s brakes. The technology is designed to work at speeds up to 50 km/h on selected Ford vehicles.
Forgetting other road users
It can also be easy to get into the mindset of forgetting the danger presented by the unpredictability of other road users – especially when drivers in the region come from all sorts of different driving environments. Ford’s Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) is therefore designed to monitor the lanes on either side of the vehicle and alert the driver when something has moved into their blind spots.
Small warning lights in the side mirrors also serve to caution drivers about the approaching traffic, while Cross-Traffic Alert is designed to warn drivers of vehicles that are approaching from the sides as they reverse, such as in a carpark, while an available 360-degree camera with split view allows the driver to see around the vehicle, meaning there should be no need to reverse blind.
Using a Mobile Phone
Though the day will come when the automotive industry is fully autonomous, and drivers will be freed from watching the road, that day is not here yet, and any distraction can be life-threatening.
The Drive Safely initiative by Nissan, Aqdar and RoadSafetyUAE was named ‘Best Road Safety Innovation Campaign Award by an Automobile Company’ at the recent Middle East Road & Bridge Forum, precisely because it targeted the use of mobile phones while driving among 18- to 35-year-old group based on its prevalence as a contributor to many serious and fatal accidents.
Ford’s all-new communications and entertainment system, SYNC 3, supports both text and voice activation, enables hands-free and Siri Eyes-Free operation, readily integrates with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and allows drivers to remain focused on the road while staying connected.
In the commercial segment, several manufacturers are also introducing a range of technologies that are similar to those highlighted above by Ford Middle East.
In February, Daimler debuted that first Mercedes-Benz Actros truck in the region with the manufacturer’s full suite of driver assistance technologies, including Active Brake Assist, Telligent Lane Assistant, Telligent Proximity Control, anti-lock braking and acceleration skid control.
Over the course of the second half of 2017, Volvo Trucks is also showcasing its full range of passive and active safety systems, including automatic traction control, tandem axle lift and Volvo Dynamic Steering in a series of customer events across the Gulf and Middle East and North Africa regions.