Thanks to it's Driver Alert and Forward Alert system the new Ford Focus has become the first ever car to receive four Euro NCAP Advanced safety rewards this week.
Euro NCAP Advanced rewards were introduced in 2010 to recognize car manufacturers that make new safety technologies available. Ford is one of only two manufacturers to hold four of these rewards and the only manufacturer to achieve this with one product.
The Driver Alert System has been designed to detect tired driver behaviour, using advanced camera technology and on-board sensors to evaluate vigilance levels.
The system monitors the vehicle’s position relative to lane markings using a forward facing, windscreen mounted camera. It also communicates with the car’s on-board yaw sensor to detect erratic movements.
Using this information, the system constantly computes how vigilant the driver is, and presents this rating via a display in the instrument cluster. It sends a warning if it detects the driver is fatigued and needs to rest. The Driver Alert feature is available on new Focus, C-MAX, Grand C-MAX, Mondeo, S-MAX and Galaxy.
The Forward Alert accident warning system uses radar technology to scan the road ahead for slowing traffic. If it detects a braking, slower moving or stationary vehicle in front and it determines that a collision is likely, the system alerts the driver with an audible chime and by flashing a warning symbol in the instrument cluster. If the driver fails to brake immediately the system triggers another function, brake support.
Brake support prepares the brake system for rapid braking by pre-charging the brake booster. When this happens, the brakes are automatically applied and the driver will notice a slight jerk. The braking system is now at a state of maximum readiness. As soon as the driver lifts their foot off the accelerator, the system will apply the brakes, slowing the vehicle. When the driver then hits the brake pedal, the system applies full braking force.”
Forward Alert can be switched on or off via the cluster menu and drivers can choose between three different sensitivity settings. The brake support feature is always active.
Forward Alert is currently available on new Ford Focus, Mondeo, S-MAX, and Galaxy.
Just as ESP has become compulsory we hope that manufacturers fitted these safety systems as standard.Published 24 November 2011