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Euro NCAP to test Autonomous Pedestrian Detection technologies from 2016

Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) systems use lasers, radar and/or cameras to detect an imminent collision, perform an effective emergency stop or reduce the impact speed significantly, and are already offered on vehicles the Audi Q7, BMW 2 Series and i3, Ford Mondeo, Lexus NX, Mercedes C-Class, Mini Cooper, Volvo V40, XC90, Toyota Avensis and VW Passat.

According to independent analysis of real-world crash data in the UK and Germany, the fitment of such technology on passenger cars could prevent one in five fatal pedestrian collisions.

Euro NCAP secretary general, Dr Michiel van Ratingen said: “These new tests are the first in the world to assess highly automated vehicle features and driver assistance systems from the pedestrian’s perspective. Many new cars now offer some form of AEB system that can help prevent car-to-car collisions, but only some are also able to detect pedestrians. By checking the results on Euro NCAP’s website, consumers will be able to verify manufacturers’ safety claims and choose the right AEB option.”

From next year, Euro NCAP will test vehicles’ response to pedestrians in simulations of the three most common urban scenarios: adults walking and running into the vehicle’s path and a child stepping out from behind a parked car. To earn a good score in the test, vehicles should be able to prevent collisions with specially developed pedestrian dummies at speeds of up to 40kmh (25mph). At more challenging speeds of 40-60kmh (25-37mph), the tests aim to reduce the collision speed to less than 40kmh, making the impact more survivable.

“Although this technology is rapidly developing, it’s not yet possible to prevent every collision with a pedestrian in the real world,” said Van Ratingen. “But vehicles designed to perform well in these tests will be better equipped to prevent these thousands of needless deaths and life-changing injuries on our European roads. Therefore, from 2016 the rating will give credit to those vehicle models that offer this capability. At the same time, these tests will make it possible for new car buyers and fleet operators to make an informed choice.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.