You can get a Lexus or BMW that warns you if a pedestrian is in your path. But only a Volvo with the Pedestrian Safety System can actually do something about that carbon-based life form you’re about to hit. Don’t get me wrong, both make awesome cars and, given the money or mentality, either one would be an awesome sweet ride for me.
This past week Lexus announced the world’s first Active Pedestrian Detection system. Amazing how there is the belief that making a “world’s first” statement is great for marketing…well in reality it is good for marketing. There’s a whole group of us early adopters that cue up for the latest of whatever is newest. My addiction started around 1970 when I paid $100 for a Bomar pocket calculator from Sears. It had four functions (-+*/) and my boss refused to expense it, so from my meager wages I bought it. I have been a sucker ever since.
Anyway, here at Volvo, we have been trying to find the right words to describe our system coming on next year’s S60. Knowing that Lexus, on the $107,000 LS 600 they have a pedestrian detection system, that BMW has a detection system, what do we call ours? Looking at Lexus, they simply warn the driver and precharge the brake system. The fine print is: “…is designed to reduce impact speed…” meaning you’re going to hit that poor sod who’s day is going from good to bad real quick. In our S60 at speeds under about 15 mph, that same poor sod will be scared, but more than likely that’s about it.
So what do we call our system? How about we call it: Collision Warning with Full Auto Braking and Pedestrian Detection/Protection/Safety? You know how we love TLS’s, so this one would be: CWwFABaPDPS. Ouch. That’ll never work. Thinking about protection, well that’s kind of after the fact, like you’ve already hit someone. We have had that kind of feature for some years, as our hoods and frontal areas are soft and have some energy absorbing properties, but it’s protection. Detection just means you’re being warned. Our system not only detects and warns and precharges the brakes, it also will go into full auto braking if the driver doesn’t respond.
Our Pedestrian feature is a system that incorporates Collision Warning technology along with Full Auto Braking technology and unique components relative to pedestrians. In my ever-thinning cranial cavity, it is a Pedestrian Safety System.
So Lexus detects, we avoid. To me, that’s a world’s first worth touting. And while a $107,000 Lexus is cool, you could buy two S60′s and, if you sweet talk one of our retailers, probably get a good price on a C30/S40 for one of the kids.
Volvo S60 – World’s First Pedestrian Safety System.
Good week to you all,