If you have purchased a new or pre-owned vehicle in the last few years, chances are your vehicle came with Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems, also known as ADAS. In simplest terms, ADAS are electronic systems that assist the driver while driving and parking. Because most accidents occur due to human error, ADAS is designed to provide a safe human-machine interface that enhances the driving experience while alerting the driver to unsafe conditions, errors or obstacles. The goal to is to reduce the number of accidents, more importantly, the number of road related fatalities each year. From lane departures to braking, to blind spot detections and imminent collisions, ADAS can assist in protecting vehicle drivers as well as other drivers and pedestrians. We provide a list of the different type of driver assisted systems below. You may find this information useful if purchasing a new(er) vehicle in the near future. Please note: based on the manufacturer, ADAS capabilities may vary.

With more drivers becoming reliant on ADAS, the truth is accidents still happen. Following any vehicular accident, it is critical to choose a reputable certified auto body repair center. Repairs are so much more than returning the aesthetics of your vehicle. Be sure to select a repair facility that will insure value, integrity and safety of your car. This includes your advanced drivers-assistance systems.  All ADAS systems MUST be checked and calibrated properly for them to function as they were designed to do. This even includes windshields that can now house cameras and sensors. Even a slight fender bender can cause an ADAS radar or sensor to be re-directed or faulty. It is imperative that all aspects of your vehicle are inspected, repaired and returned to pre-accident condition.

It is also important to note that not all repair shops invest in nor have the proper equipment, technology and skills to address the repair needs of today’s vehicles. One important factor is to look for a shop’s certifications. Check for logos (I-CAR GOLD, manufacturing certifications, etc). Certifications indicate that technicians have specialized training in repairs and techniques as well as quality. Never hesitate to ask questions or state concerns regarding your vehicle pre-repairs. The safety of your family deserves no less.  

If you are unfamiliar with this technology or will be purchasing a vehicle with ADAS, here is an in-depth list of what all ADAS can cover:

  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC) systems help drivers maintain or regain control of vehicles in difficult driving situations, such as during unexpected turns or while negotiating icy roads. A vehicle’s ESC continuously monitors tire movement and steering wheel activity to sense a loss of traction or slippage. In such situations, ESC systems can reduce engine power, apply brakes independently to each wheel, and correct tire suspension much faster than the driver could. These systems are particularly helpful in managing unexpected events, or driving on wet or icy roadways. They are also especially helpful to drivers of large vehicles, such as SUVs.
  • Adaptive headlights adjust direction and intensity in response to steering to provide additional light on curves, turns and hills or to highlight potential hazards.
  • Rearview video system (RVS), also known as a backup camera, allows drivers to view the area behind the rear bumper and see small objects that may be obstructed by the vehicle’s blind spots or may not ordinarily be visible at all. There are several versions of RVS: Some simply provide a view from the back of the vehicle, while others pair this view with a sensor that warns (audible alarm) if an object is detected too close to the back of the vehicle and may even apply the brakes automatically to prevent a potential collision.
  • Adaptive (Automatic) Cruise Control (ACC) senses where the vehicle in front is relative to the driver’s own vehicle and slows down and speeds up to maintain consistent spacing. Unlike traditional cruise control, which can only be set to a single speed, ACC can adapt when other vehicles change their speed.
  • Lane Departure Warning (LDW) systems alert drivers whenever they unintentionally drift too close to the edges of the lane. The warning type varies between car manufacturers; some use an alarm sound, while others cause the driver’s steering wheel or seat to vibrate, creating a feeling like driving over a rumble strip. LDW systems should not be confused with Lane Departure Prevention systems (described below).
  • Lane Departure Prevention (LDP) systems, also known as lane keeping assistance, help keep a vehicle from unintentionally drifting from its lane. LDP uses a camera to monitor the distance between the vehicle and lane markings. If the vehicle drifts towards the lane markers, the system first sounds an audible warning, followed by a selective application of the brakes to help move the vehicle back into its lane.
  • Forward Collision Mitigation (FCM) systems detect how far and fast the vehicle in front may be moving and automatically apply the brakes if the driver does not respond. In this way, FCM systems work to reduce the chance of crashes and reduce the severity of crashes when they occur. FCM should not be confused with Forward Collision Warning systems (described below).
  • Forward Collision Warning (FCW) systems alert the driver when the vehicle is about to collide with another vehicle some distance ahead. The type of warning will vary between vehicles: Some use a flashing light, while others use an alarm sound or vibration.
  • Automatic emergency braking (AEB) systems detect an impending forward crash with another vehicle in time to avoid or mitigate the crash. These systems first alert the driver to take corrective action to avoid the crash. If the driver’s response is not sufficient to avoid the crash, AEB may automatically apply the brakes to assist in preventing or reducing the severity of a crash. There are two types of AEB currently available: dynamic brake support (DBS) and crash imminent braking (CIB).  If the driver brakes but not hard enough to avoid the crash, DBS automatically supplements the driver’s braking in an effort to avoid the crash. If the driver does not take any action to avoid the crash, CIB automatically applies the vehicle’s brakes to slow or stop the car, avoiding the crash or reducing its severity. New research, conducted by CHOP researchers published in Safety Science show that AEB prevented 57% of rear-end striking crashes involving 16- to 19-year-old drivers and 81% involving 20- to-24-year-old drivers.
  • Pedestrian Automatic Emergency Braking (PAEB) systems are an emerging technology and provide automatic braking when pedestrians are in front of a vehicle and the driver has not acted to avoid a crash.
  • Automatic Crash Notification (ACN) systems notify emergency responders that a crash has occurred and provide its location. When the ACN sensor detects air bag deployment or a dramatic and sudden drop in speed, an automatic connection is made with an operator. An emerging technology, ACN systems have the potential to reduce the rate of death and disability by decreasing the time it takes for emergency medical services to arrive at a crash scene and transport those involved to a hospital.