Volvo safety technology
9:00 PM | July 4 2017

Windows to the world

Just knowing that our cars can keep a watchful eye out for trouble where we might not expect it gives us a feeling of calm reassurance.

Awareness, guidance, reassurance and protection. At one time or another, the human eye has been used to represent all of these things.

And is it any wonder? Our eyes are amazing. The second most complex organ in the human body after the brain, our eyes contain 107 million light-sensitive cells, which allow us to perceive objects in colour, depth and detail, as well as help us make informed decisions about our environment. They can also process 36,000 pieces of information every hour and are home to the hardest-working muscles in the human body.

In fact, whomever coined the phrase, ’Our eyes are the window to the soul,’ was doing them a disservice – our eyes are our window to the world.

Yet they can also do with a helping hand – especially on our busy roads and all the associated hazards with modern driving.

This is why Volvo Cars spends so much time developing new on-board safety solutions: so that you can drive where you want, when you want, without having to worry about any unexpected obstacles getting in your way.

So, how exactly can your car make you more aware when you’re out on the road? Over the years, Volvo Cars has introduced numerous safety solutions designed to help you keep a closer eye on your surroundings.

The extra field of vision provided by innovations such as Blind Spot Information, Lane Assist and the 360° bird’s-eye camera allows you to stay in control when your vision is limited or obscured – situations that, only a few short years ago, would have been a lot more difficult to negotiate.

But Volvo Cars’ latest safety solutions don’t simply keep an eye out for potentially hazardous situations. They are also capable of acting to prevent them occurring in the first place.

Volvo Cars has been leading the way in the development of on-board auto-brake technology since becoming one of the first car manufacturers to introduce collision warning with brake support. Years of research, ambition and innovation culminated in City Safety, Volvo Cars’ cutting-edge collection of auto-brake functions and on-board crash prevention technology.

In the same way that our eyes capture light and send information back to the brain, City Safety captures the car’s surroundings and sends important information back to the driver. City Safety includes pedestrian and cyclist detection, Forward Collision Warning and another Volvo Cars safety world-first – auto brake at intersections.

Based on a combination of camera and radar, this solution can detect objects, tracks their movements and determines their distance from the car – even in the dark.

The system makes 50 calculations per second to determine the amount of braking force required to avoid a collision, based on the gap to the vehicle ahead and the car’s own speed. If the calculated braking force exceeds a certain level without the driver responding, even to audible warnings, the system determines the risk of collision is imminent and the auto-brake function is activated.

Of course, no matter how amazing these latest on-board safety innovations are, they are no substitute for what the human eye is capable of observing. So, don’t think of Volvo Cars safety solutions – such as City Safety and our park assist cameras – as substitutes for your own eyes. Think of them as reassuring helping hands willing to offer assistance whenever they are needed.

View the rest of our July I Roll Stories.

I Roll

Volvo is Latin for 'I roll' and was originally trademarked in 1915 with ball bearing production in mind. But 18 million cars later, Volvo has come to mean much more. 

Volvo started making cars in 1927 because we believed nobody else was making them strong enough or safe enough for Swedish roads. Along the way we’ve come up with dozens of innovations, some of which have changed the world. And it’s this proud history that continues our drive forward to the next great Volvo Cars idea.