SAFETY TECH­NOL­OGY

These fu­tur­is­tic fea­tures can make you a bet­ter driver, largely by do­ing your job for you. Juliet McGuire ex­plores your op­tions

Women's Health (South Africa) - - LIFE ETC -

1 LARGE AN­I­MAL DE­TEC­TION SYS­TEM

Have you ever driven through the East­ern Cape? Yes? Then you’ve ex­pe­ri­enced the (not so) wildlife graz­ing on the side of the N2, who step into the road every so of­ten to cause com­plete may­hem. Driven through the Ka­roo? Then you’ve had to con­tend with spring­ing bucks – spring­boks, if you will. Well, Volvo has de­vel­oped tech­nol­ogy that will end these bashed- in- bon­net road- side mo­ments. It’s called Large An­i­mal De­tec­tion and it can spot and iden­tify, you guessed it, large an­i­mals and will stop your car be­fore you col­lide with, say, a Jer­sey cow. It can also iden­tify a kan­ga­roo in Aus­tralia or a moose in the US. The tech slows down or stops your car based on the an­i­mal’s size, lo­ca­tion and move­ment. And it works dur­ing the day or at night (if the an­i­mal is il­lu­mi­nated by your head­lights)! FOUND IN: Volvo V90 Cross Coun­try

2 DROWSINESS DE­TEC­TION SYS­TEM

This is for those of you who power through a long road trip and think that stop­ping to rest is un­nec­es­sary. Drowsiness/ dis­trac­tion de­tec­tion tech­nol­ogy con­sis­tently mea­sures the steer­ing in­put, lane de­par­ture and driv­ing time to de­ter­mine when it’s time for a break. A cof­fee cup will usu­ally show up in the dash­board, ac­com­pa­nied by a chime, to no­tify you to pull over. Most of the man­u­fac­tur­ers have a ver­sion of this, for ex­am­ple, Ford calls it Driver Alert whereas Kia calls it Driver At­ten­tion Warn­ing. Con­ti­nen­tal is also work­ing on a cam­era that can track the eyes of the driver (even through sun­glasses) to see if they are open and if the driver is pay­ing at­ten­tion or dis­tracted by mon­i­tor­ing where the driver is look­ing. You have nowhere to hide now! FOUND IN: Audi Q2 (as an op­tional ex­tra)

3 ADAP­TIVE CRUISE CON­TROL

Cruise con­trol has been around for ages, but Adap­tive Cruise Con­trol is the one you want now. And most pre­mium cars of­fer it (some­times as an op­tional ex­tra). It uses lasers, radars and cam­eras to keep a con­stant dis­tance be­tween you and the car ahead, which is ex­tremely help­ful in poor vis­i­bil­ity. Some will even bring the car to a com­plete stop when, for in­stance, you are stopped at road works and then will ac­cel­er­ate again once traf­fic starts to move. It can make for rather lazy driv­ing though be­cause all you re­ally need to do is steer. FOUND IN: BMW 7 Se­ries

4 CROSS TRAF­FIC ALERT

How of­ten do you nearly have a heart at­tack when re­vers­ing out of a park­ing space, most of­ten in mall park­ing lots where it’s al­ready a tight squeeze, be­cause some­one hoots at you be­cause you didn’t see them ap­proach? Cross Traf­fic Alert should keep your heart tick­ing a while longer. It uses rear park­ing sen­sors that can spot cars ap­proach­ing and will audi­bly warn you. You don’t even need to look any­more... But you def­i­nitely should! FOUND IN: Range Rover Ve­lar (op­tional with Park Pack)

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