Some luxury cars already come equipped with a radar unit mounted inside the grille that maintains a fixed distance behind the car ahead; it has the capacity to ease the throttle and even brake lightly. An enhanced version coming to market later this year serves as a crash-avoidance system. It combines visual and radar sensors with advanced vision-processing software to detect moving vehicles and stationary objects up to 170 meters away, and pedestrians 30 meters distant. The system sounds an alarm when braking is necessary; when it senses an imminent collision, it can apply full braking if the driver fails to do so immediately. The technology will appear in the 2010 Volvo S60 and several other models in North America.
Product: Electronically scanning radar
Cost: Included in vehicle prices