Bosch Debuts Low-Cost Drowsy Driver Alert System
Technology uses vehicle’s existing sensors to look for signs of drowsiness.
Technologies such as navigation, Bluetooth and voice recognition once were found only on luxury cars, but have now started to appear even on some entry-level vehicles. Thanks to the typical pattern of tech getting less expensive every year, this trend will continue -- and accelerate.
The one exception to this rule has been advanced safety technology such as collision-avoidance, night-vision and pedestrian-detection systems. While features such as blind-spot detection and lane-departure prevention have trickled down to less expensive vehicles, the most sophisticated safety tech is still too expensive to include on lower-priced cars.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 100,000 police-reported crashes are caused by driver fatigue each year, resulting in an estimated 1,500 deaths and 71,000 injuries. Mercedes-Benz and Volvo offer systems that use cutting-edge cameras and sensors to tell when drivers are getting too tired and alert them before fatigue leads to an accident. Now major automotive supplier Bosch has announced it has developed a system that will expand drowsy-driving alerts to many more vehicles.
The company says its Drowsiness Detection System can be integrated inexpensively into almost any car. It receives data from a car’s electronic power-steering and stability-control systems and analyzes driver inputs to look for signs of drowsiness. Employing the car’s existing systems and sensors lowers costs and makes the feature available in more vehicles for more people.
The first vehicle to feature Bosch’s new system is the Volkswagen Passat Alltrack, which debuted at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show late last year and was shown as a concept at the 2012 New York Auto Show. No word yet on when the car or the system will be available in the U.S.
Regardless, it’s likely that Bosch’s low-cost Drowsiness Detection System will make it stateside at some point. And the price of other advanced safety systems also eventually will fall, so that you don’t have to be wealthy to have a new car that helps keep you safe.
[Source: Motor Authority]
EXPLORE NEW CARS
MORE ON MSN AUTOS
ABOUT EXHAUST NOTES
Cars are cool, and here at MSN Autos we love everything about them, but we also know they're more than simply speed and style: a car is an essential tool, a much-needed accessory to help you get through your day-to-day life. What you drive is also one of the most important investments you can make, so we'll help you navigate your way through the car buying and ownership experiences. We strive to be your daily destination for news, notes, tips and tricks from across the automotive world. So whether it's through original content from our world-class journalists or the latest buzz from the far corners of the Web, Exhaust Notes helps you make sense of your automotive world.
Have a story idea? Tip us off at email@example.com.