Looking Further Ahead in Vehicle Safety: Communicating Vehicles
Jun 07, 2005
Ulrich Mellinghoff, Vice President, Development and Engineering, Safety NVC, Testing, Mercedes Car Group, DaimlerChrysler AG
Dr. Ralf Herrtwich, Director, Vehicle IT and Services Research Berlin – Stuttgart – Ulm – Palo Alto, DaimlerChrysler AG
SARA Radar S-Class Front
  • Central 77Ghz DISTRONIC radar sensor now supplemented with additional 24GHz short range radar sensors in front bumper
  • Combined range: 0.7ft to 500ft
  • DISTRONIC PLUS: continuous adaptive cruise control from 0-125 mph
  • Brake Assist PLUS: automatically adapts braking pressure when driver indicates intention to brake to avoid collision with detected object
DaimlerChrysler appreciates the Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) adoption of regulations which permit marketing of vehicular radars at 24GHz. Notably, FCC commissioners "expect vehicular radar to become as essential to passenger safety as air bags for motor vehicles.”
PRE-SAFE® uses time before impact to better prepare vehicle and occupants for a possible crash.
Activation Criteria
  • Heavy oversteer or understeer
  • Emergency braking with Brake Assist or significant Brake Assist PLUS support
Mercedes-Benz Four-Wheel-Drive System 4MATIC
This permanent four-wheel-drive system developed by Mercedes-Benz operates hand in hand with the Electronic Stability Program ESP® and the 4ETS Electronic Traction System, making the 4MATIC models trendsetters in terms of handling safety (=ESP®) and traction (=4MATIC and 4ETS).
It is not only in adverse weather conditions such as rain, snow or ice that 4MATIC shows its strengths; the electronically controlled four-wheel-drive system also ensures better handling stability when moving off, accelerating, taking bends at speed or on poor road surfaces, and helps the driver to control the vehicle in critical situations.
Instead of differential locks 4MATIC uses the electronically controlled traction system 4ETS, an additional component of the stability program ESP®. This is automatically activated if one or more wheels lose their road contact. In this case, 4ETS automatically applies brake pressure to these wheels, while increasing the torque at the wheels with sufficient traction.
The four-wheel-drive system is configured so that the drive torque is always distributed to the front and rear wheels on a 40:60 basis. Accordingly the four-wheel-drive models have a deliberate “rear-end bias,” as this distribution provides the best conditions for safe handling – even at high speeds.
The interaction of ESP® and 4ETS with the permanent four-wheel-drive system not only makes the 4MATIC models the safest cars in their class, but also opens up new dimensions in handling dynamics.
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