With the recent announcement of world-first technology on the upcoming 2015 XC90, Volvo is telegraphing a move toward much more autonomous vehicles. What do these technologies mean for you as a driver?
According to the Volvo press release, “the XC90 will offer the most comprehensive and technologically sophisticated standard safety package available in the automotive industry. The new technologies will take the company a significant step closer to its vision that no one will be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo car by 2020.”
Along with all the usual safety suspects, the upcoming Volvo XC90 will include — as standard equipment — the following technology:
Auto Brake at Intersections
When it arrives, the XC90 will be the world’s first car that will automatically brake if the driver turns in front of an oncoming car. This is a common scenario at busy city crossings as well as on highways, where the speed limits are higher.
The all-new Volvo XC90 detects a potential crash and brakes automatically.
Volvo already features City Safety technology in many of its cars that will apply the brakes if the vehicle detects an imminent crash at low speeds. Auto Brake at Intersections will apply the brakes from higher speeds.
Volvo’s Professor Lotta Jakobsson notes that this world-first technology is a further example of “how new technologies target substantial real-life traffic problems. This strategy moves us closer and closer to our ambition that by 2020 no one should be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo.”
In Sweden, Volvo has been deeply involved with the SARTRE project, which “to encourage a step change in personal transport usage by developing of environmental roadtrains called platoons.” Platoons consist of a lead truck, and uses technology that allows drivers to turn over control of cars and trucks to a semi-autonomous “driver.”
With auto braking technology like the system in the new XC90, we’re stepping ever closer to a semi-autonomous driving system. Are you ready to turn over control of your car, if the benefits are increased safety and lesser environmental impact?