Car safety has evolved a long way from lap belts and airbags. Today’s most innovative car safety features incorporate everything from passenger and animal detection to collision avoidance. It’s worth taking a look at these 5 innovative car safety technologies before you buy your next vehicle.
Airbags… for pedestrians
Airbags may not sound very innovative, but Land Rover will change your mind. Their Discovery models are equipped with airbags that deploy from the windshield when sensors located on the car’s front bumper detect that a pedestrian has been hit. These airbags can protect pedestrians’ heads from going through windshields, providing cushion that can be the difference between life and death in an accident. Some Volvo models also offer a similar feature.
Co-pilots for city driving
City driving can feel like a dangerous game of Frogger, with pedestrians, other vehicles and even cyclists coming at you from every direction. Volvo’s City Tech feature looks for these types of obstacles and acts as a co-pilot, even braking for you if you don’t react in time.
Night vision displays
Many luxury car manufacturers, such as BMW, Mercedes and Audi, offer a night-vision feature that helps you avoid obstacles in your path—even when you can’t see them. This can be particularly helpful in rural conditions where deer and other wildlife pose a night-time driving hazard.
Safer ways to yell at your kids
You’re a parent – you’ve probably turned away from the road to yell at your kids in the backseat at least once or twice. Toyota’s Easy Speak feature, available on the Sienna minivan, gives parents a safer way to tell Mason to stop pulling Emma’s hair without taking their eyes off the road. With the push of a button, drivers can activate an intercom feature that lets them talk to kids seated in the third row without yelling or turning their heads.
Rear view mirrors with a tech twist
Rear view mirrors have been basically the same for decades, but Cadillac has changed all that. Their new rear view mirror is powered by a wide-angle video camera and offers up to 300 percent more vision than standard rear view mirrors. That difference can help drivers avoid obstacles behind them, and it’s a small upgrade that could reap big safety benefits.