Toyota to launch active-safety systems on volume models in 2015

Article by Christian A., on November 29, 2014

Toyota Motor Corp. will start rolling out a range of advanced active-safety technology across its lineup early next year, according to Chief Safety Technology Officer Moritaka Yoshida. Toyota will initial deploy technologies like auto-parking and vehicle-to-vehicle communication systems to Japan, and will later offer these systems to other markets.

Toyota unveiled a slew of new or re-engineered technologies that offers a step-up of everything it had or had not offered – including more sophisticated pre-crash braking packages; an improved auto-parking feature; a next-generation auto-adjust headlamp; and a vehicle-to-infrastructure and vehicle-to-vehicle communication system.

Two pre-crash auto-braking packages -- Toyota Safety Sense C system for compact cars and Toyota Safety Sense P for midsize and high-end vehicles -- and other systems will be rolled out in the United States as early as next year.

According to Yoshida, Toyota’s goal is to launch affordable advanced safety technologies that can be installed in mass-market vehicles. Toyota is launching the technologies as part of a bid to make people view the brand as a bringer of safety.

The systems are also considered building-block technologies that will be used as basis for building future self-driving cars. According to Yoshida, carmakers are already at a point of diminishing returns from improvements in passive safety systems like stronger body frames and seat belts.

He noted that carmakers can get faster gains from technologies that prevent crashes. The carmaker will introduce the Toyota Safety Sense C system in Japan next spring, and P next summer. Toyota plans to roll out both systems in most passenger-car models and trim levels in the US, Europe and Japan by 2017.

Toyota vowed that these systems will perform better than top-tier active-safety systems seen in premium models like the Lexus LS, but at around the same cost. He remarked that costs are dropping quickly while performance improves.

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