Driver safety systems prove popular as cost of connected systems is debated

24 April 2017

24 April 2017

New technologies such as automated braking systems and adaptive cruise control are finding their way onto more newly registered vehicles in Germany, according to a Bosch evaluation of the 2015 vehicle registration statistics. 

Such technologies are seen as a precursor to autonomous vehicles, while helping manufacturers to improve their Euro NCAP safety ratings, especially automated braking systems which are necessary to receive the highest rating of five stars in the consumer protection organisation’s vehicle tests.  

Bosch’s findings indicate that one in four new vehicles are sold with automatic emergency braking, while 11% feature adaptive cruise control. In addition, 16% of vehicles monitor lane changes or can independently stay in lane, and 11% feature camera-based road sign recognition 

Dirk Hoheisel, a member of the Bosch board of management, comments: ′Driver assistance systems are gaining an increasing foothold in the market and are thereby paving the way for automated driving. The more familiar drivers are with driver assistance systems, the greater the acceptance of automated driving.’ 

Emergency braking systems are also proving popular in other European countries, with 32% of newly registered vehicles in the Netherlands equipped with the system in 2015, while the figure in Belgium was 30% and 21% in the UK.  

To conduct its evaluation of driver assistance systems, Bosch used data from the service provider IHS Markit Automotive and the German Federal Motor Transport Authority’s 2015 statistics for newly registered cars.  

While drivers are prepared to pay for such safety systems, other forms of smart technology may not be so popular. As Renault and Nissan push to develop a lead in the race to roll out smart vehicles that can work with drivers to predict certain habits, manufacturers are now faced with a new challenge, predicting how much extra consumers will pay for the services. 

With a market valued at $180 billion (€165 billion), the carmaker is aware that for vehicles connected to the internet, a cost to the driver is involved straight away. Research by PwC shows that customers are willing to pay as much as $10,000 (€9,000) for connected car technology at the time of initial purchase, yet they are unwilling to subscribe to lifetime services, which could account for 14.2% of the total price of premium vehicles by 2022. 

Connected car services will require initial investment by manufacturers and customers together, in terms of infrastructure, technology development and internet connectivity, according to a report by the Financial Times. However, automotive manufacturers believe benefits will begin to outweigh the costs, with drivers able to improve their habits behind the wheel, lower their insurance and their repair and maintenance costs.