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Car and Driver: 20 Automakers Agree to Make Automatic Emergency Braking Standard by 2022

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2016 Volvo XC90 T6

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Bureaucracy can really slow things down, so the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) are skipping the red tape in their push to make automatic emergency braking a standard feature on all new cars sold in the U.S. Rather than the onerous process of establishing formal regulations, the government has instead compelled automakers to commit to making the feature standard on all cars by 2022. Ten more automakers have now joined this formal agreement, covering around 99 percent of the U.S. auto market.

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The DOT says that this sort of “gentleman’s agreement” will achieve results as much as three years sooner than formal regulations would. Given the proven efficacy of automatic emergency braking (AEB), which automatically applies the brakes if the car senses that a collision is imminent and the driver doesn’t take action, those three years could make a big difference. NHTSA estimates that standard AEB tech could prevent as many as 28,000 crashes and 12,000 injuries in that time frame.

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Ford Mondeo Pre-Collision Assist

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Audi, BMW, Ford, General Motors, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Tesla, Toyota, Volkswagen, and Volvo were the first 10 to join the agreement last September. They’re now joined by Fiat Chrysler, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar Land Rover, Kia, Maserati, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Porsche, and Subaru. This comprehensive list essentially covers all the bases, with the only notable exceptions being low-volume sports car manufacturers like Aston Martin and Lotus.

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Volvo is currently the only automaker that offers AEB as standard on all its vehicles, but more and more mainstream vehicles are offering the technology as of late, at least as an option. Honda, for instance, offers AEB as part of its $1000 Honda Sensing package available on all trim levels of the Accord and the Civic, while Subaru’s EyeSight system includes AEB and is offered on most versions of the Impreza, Legacy, Outback, Forester, and XV Crosstrek as an option package.

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