Volvo Car Corporation part of major European study that reveals:
New safety technology reduces the risk of motorway rear-end impacts by up to 42 percent
The final report from the EuroFOT research project, which has brought together 28 European companies and organisations, confirms that Volvo Car Corporation's systems to help drivers avoid incidents and collisions deliver significant benefits.
A car with adaptive cruise control and collision warning, for instance, cuts the risk of colliding with the vehicle in front on a motorway by up to 42 percent.
The large-scale European Field Operational Test on Active Safety Systems (EuroFOT) is a research project supported by European funds. It involves 28 organisations, including Swedish participants Volvo Car Corporation, Volvo Trucks and Chalmers University of Technology.
100 Volvo V70 and XC70 models with a total of 263 drivers participated in EuroFOT. All cars were fitted with cameras and sensors that registered every second of every journey for 18 months, which meant that every little incident and situation could be studied and evaluated.
These cars supplied Volvo Car Corporation's safety experts with 30 terra bytes of data from 3 million kilometres of driving. The final report from EuroFOT also includes material from other vehicle manufacturers.
"The analyses show that our world-leading focus on new safety and support technologies delivers results in everyday traffic conditions. Since the start of EuroFOT, we have presented a number of new systems and in addition refined already existing technologies. One example is Pedestrian Detection with Full Auto Brake, which alerts the driver and automatically brakes the car if there is a pedestrian in the road," says Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President Research & Development at Volvo Car Corporation.
Analysis of five technologies
Analysis of the Volvos used in EuroFOT focused on five technological solutions:
- ACC (Adaptive Cruise Control) maintains a preset gap to the vehicle in front.
- CW (Collision Warning) alerts the driver if a collision of colliding with the vehicle in front is imminent. At the same time, the brakes are prepared for firm braking.
- BLIS (Blind Sport Information System) alerts the driver to vehicles in the blind spots on both sides of the car.
- LDW (Lane Departure Warning) warns the driver if the vehicle accidently strays across any of the lane markings.
- DAC (Driver Alert Control) is designed to detect and warn if the driver is tired or distracted.
Increased safety with cruise control and collision warning
The final report from EuroFOT clearly shows that adaptive cruise control and forward collision warning enhance traffic safety. The benefits are greatest on the motorway, where the risk of driving into the vehicle in front is cut by up to 42 percent.
Adaptive Cruise Control is used on the motorway for more than 51 percent of the total distance covered - which confirms that the system is appreciated by drivers. 80 percent of them feel that progress on the road is more comfortable and convenient, and a massive 94 percent feel safer with the system activated.
When it comes to collision warning, 70 percent of the drivers feel that it improves the level of safety. One participant in the study, for instance, says: "Thanks to the warning system, a couple of times I managed to avoid being involved in an accident when the vehicles in front suddenly slammed on their brakes".
Positive trend for other technologies as well
As regards the other warning systems, which focus on tired drivers, lane keeping and vehicles in the blind spot, the trend is also positive. However, there is not yet enough data to provide statistically significant forecasts of the accident risk reduction.
"This is because the number of incidents is relatively small. The emergency situations we have had are identified and examined, however, reveal that drivers do note and respond to the alerts. In tiredness incidents that led to alerts, the driver recovered control over the vehicle before the situation became serious," says John-Fredrik Grönvall, Manager Traffic Accident Research at Volvo Car Corporation.
The EuroFOT participants confirm that the Driver Alert Control actually works. One of them comments: "I was exhausted after a hectic workday that stretched into late evening. I'm really glad the system alerted me in time."
Valuable contribution to the development of safer cars
"Both the comprehensive studies of driver behaviour and the wide range of comments from the drivers involved are very valuable in our research. We design our cars in response to customer wishes and needs. The results from EuroFOT help us develop new, user-friendly and effective technologies that bring us closer to our goal of no injuries or fatalities in a new Volvo car in 2020," says Peter Mertens.
For more information about EuroFOT: www.eurofot-ip.eu
Volvo presents the all-new V40 and the world's first plug-in diesel hybrid V60 for the first time in the UK at the Goodwood Festival of Speed
Volvo will be showcasing it's latest offerings to the public with the first UK viewing of its new five-door hatchback, the Volvo V40, and the world's first plug-in diesel hybrid, the Volvo V60 D6 AWD, at this years Moving Motorshow and Goodwood Festival of Speed, held between the 28th June and 1st July 2012 in the grounds of Goodwood House.
The all-new V40, starting at just £19,745 on the road, enters the premium hatchback segment with a class-leading set of innovative high-tech features. The new V40 is the first car in the world to feature a pedestrian airbag, an innovation which helps reduce the severity of pedestrian injuries in the event of an impact. It is also the only model in its class to fit Bluetooth and the low speed collision avoidance system, City Safety, as standard.
With CO2 emissions as low as 94 g/km, the D2 version of the Volvo V40 boasts a combined fuel consumption of 78.5 mpg*. Its 1.6-litre diesel engine has 115 hp and 270 Nm of torque and comes with a six-speed manual gearbox and start/stop function. This means V40 drivers will benefit from improved running costs and the lowest vehicle tax bands.
Joining the all-new V40 at this year's Festival is the world's first plug-in diesel hybrid, the Volvo V60 D6 AWD, Volvo Car Corporation's most technically advanced model ever - an electric car, hybrid car and muscle-car all rolled into one. At the touch of a button, the driver can choose which of the three cars they want to drive at any given moment.
The front wheels of the V60 Plug-in Hybrid are powered by a five-cylinder 2.4-litre turbo diesel producing 215 hp and maximum torque is 440 Nm, while the rear axle is powered by an electric motor producing 70 horsepower, all while only producing 49g/km of CO2 on the combined cycle.
The driver can select the required driving mode via three buttons that gives the car three entirely different temperaments: Pure, Hybrid or Power.
- In Pure mode the car is powered solely by its electric motor as much as possible. If the battery pack has been recharged with electricity from renewable sources, its range is up to 32 miles with no carbon dioxide emissions from the tailpipe. The electric range varies with terrain, climate and driving style.
- Hybrid is the standard setting whenever the car is started. The diesel engine and electric motor cooperate to ensure optimal balance between driving pleasure and environmental footprint. CO2 emission (NEDC, mixed driving cycle for certification) is just 49g/km and it has a total range of up to 621 miles.
- In Power mode the technology is optimized to give the car the maximum possible power. The diesel engine and electric motor have a total power output of 215+70 horsepower and maximum torque of 440+200Nm. The electric motor's lightning-quick torque delivery contributes to the car's acceleration from 0 to 62mph in 6.2 seconds.
The V60 Plug-in Hybrid stand at Goodwood is the culmination of a European Tour that Volvo has undertaken to demonstrate hybrid technology to the public. More information on the tour can be found at http://www.switchtopure.com/ .
During the Thursday of the Moving Motorshow, specially selected customers will have the opportunity to drive the all-new V40 and the V60 Plug-in Hybrid up Goodwood's famous hill. These customers will be amongst the first to drive either model within the UK and coupled with an iconic stretch of road, it is sure to be a memorable experience for those lucky enough to have the opportunity.
*Fitted with 205 tires / on the combined cycle
Heroic Homecoming For Groupama, Puma Replace Heartbroken Telefonica In Second
Groupama completed a heroic comeback victory on Leg 8 of the Volvo Ocean Race on Friday, strengthening their grip on the overall standings and realising a dream homecoming to Lorient – while Telefónica suffered a cruel twist of fate that allowed PUMA to move into second overall.
Just two days ago Groupama were back in fourth struggling to catch up after spending more than two hours trying to free their jammed mainsail, with bowman Brad Marsh having to climb the 31-metre mast three times in storm conditions.
But once again Franck Cammas’ crew showed off their blistering pace, hauling back their rivals to climb up to second going into the final 24 hours -- and when Telefónica saw their hopes dashed by a second broken rudder 12 hours from the finish they were left unchallenged in terms of pace.
The win sees them take a maximum 30 points to move on to a total of 219, bolstering their position at the top of the overall leaderboard with just one leg and two in-port races left.
CAMPER with Emirates Team New Zealand took a strong second in the leg while PUMA Ocean Racing powered by BERG came home in third to take over as Groupama’s main challengers, 23 points behind them.
CAMPER are five points further back on 191 points. Telefónica will join them on 191 if they go on to finish ahead of Team Sanya in fifth.
An army of French fans turned out to give Groupama an ecstatic welcome back to their home port and celebrate their second leg victory of the race.
"It's a very good feeling for me and for the crew," said Cammas, who steered his team across the line at 1131 UTC, for an elapsed time of 4d 23h 31m 02s. "It was a short leg but it was very hard. Last night was very complicated and we took a lot of risks but finally they paid off.
"This was a dream we had 10 months ago and we're realising that dream now. We still have one leg to go and it's important to do well, but tonight we can have a good night."
Just under an hour after Groupama finished, CAMPER crossed the line to take second place, with PUMA claiming third just 15 minutes later.
“We were back a bit during this leg and we knew it would be tough to get out to the Azores with all the jib reaching, but then we knew there would be some chances in the low pressure,” said skipper Chris Nicholson.
“When you find yourself in 45-50 knots you’re just trying to make it through in one piece – forget about the results, you just want to make it through the night, and we did with good speed.”
PUMA skipper Ken Read said he was happy to see his team notch up their 10th successive podium finish of the race, including in-port races, but that he was conscious of Groupama extending their overall lead further.
“It’s bittersweet,” he said. “We didn’t sail our best leg to be honest -- we made some mistakes. Slipping up on CAMPER at the end was disappointing, but I give them credit for taking advantage of the one little slip up we made.
“I hope I’m wrong but I have a feeling we’ve seen the opportunity to win this race slipping away. That’s a big 10 points that they just amassed over us.”
Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing missed out on a podium position by less than two hours, finishing in fourth at 1417 UTC.
Meanwhile, the reality of seeing his Leg 8 dreams dashed was sinking in for Telefónica skipper Iker Martínez.
"The mood on board is as good as it can be in circumstances like these, as we have just seen any chance of us winning this round the world regatta slip away," he said. "It's like two years work just disappearing into thin air in a matter of minutes - what a mess. Now I'll be happy if we all get to shore without any further problems."
Wild conditions continued to dominate in the final sprint for the finish line, as seen in this incredible video from on board CAMPER.
Despite being the shortest of the legs so far at under 2,000 nautical miles, Leg 8 from Lisbon, Portugal, to Lorient, France, threw up numerous challenges.
The fleet had to negotiate the light, tricky winds of the Azores High as they approached the waypoint of São Miguel, while in the latter stages winds got up to more than 40 knots in a violent North Atlantic storm.
Just 48 hours from the finish, Groupama faced a potentially dangerous situation as they tried to reduce sail area in preparation for gale-force winds.
The sail got jammed at the top of the mast leaving Marsh to carry out some mid-sea heroics, climbing to the top of the mast three times in winds of well over 20 knots and rough seas.
After two hours of repairs, Marsh’s skills kept the French team in the race and they only lost out 20 miles to the fleet.
Leg 8 also produced record-breaking 24-hour runs, with CAMPER setting the top distance of the race so far of 565 miles.
Telefónica are expected to cross the finish line at 2000 UTC, with Team Sanya due to finish at 2200 UTC.