Mercedes-Benz Strives for ‘Accident-Free Driving’ by 2050

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Automaker Mercedes-Benz remains focused on improving safety for traditional and electric vehicles.  -  Photo: Mercedes-Benz

Automaker Mercedes-Benz remains focused on improving safety for traditional and electric vehicles.

Photo: Mercedes-Benz

While several safety advocates have set the goal of zero traffic fatalities by 2050, Mercedes-Benz is going above and beyond this by committing itself to a “vision of accident-free driving” by 2050, reports the automaker. In other words: no more accidents involving a Mercedes vehicle. 

Vehicle safety has always been at the core of the Mercedes-Benz brand and the manufacturer wants to continue to expand this claim in the future. The following describes some of the design/engineering aspects of safety that this major auto manufacturer deems most important now and in the future.

Today, drivers of Mercedes-Benz models are supported by more than 40 active driver assistance systems. These range from adaptive cruise control, steering assist, lane keeping assist, blind spot assist, active emergency stop, and brake assist, for example. Driver assistance systems will remain a core safety feature moving forward in the future.

In recent times, Mercedes-Benz assistance systems are becoming increasingly closely interlinked, networked, and integrated — and brakes often play a role here. For example, Active Brake Assist, today can detect other motor vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, and more. Brake technology from Mercedes-Benz is an integral part of the safety-related assistance systems and will likely continue to evolve.

Moreover, the automaker introduced a disruptive innovation some 20 years ago. Its PRE-SAFE system marked the first time that active elements helped support passive protective measures to improve outcomes in the event of an accident. Examples include automatic closing of the windows and the sunroof in critical driving situations before an imminent collision, preventive tensioning of the front seat belts with the first reversible belt tensioners or adjusting the front passenger seat to a more upright position.

More recent innovations of PRE-SAFE continue to this day. For example, the technology can now lift the driver or front passenger inwards out of the danger zone just before a side impact. And, there is even a feature designed to protect against hearing loss during a collision.

Mercedes-Benz’s safety standards do not differentiate between different drive systems, notes the automaker. Whether combustion, hybrid, or electric drives — in all cases, the development team ensures that appropriate technology ensures a comparable degree of protection.

When it comes to electric vehicles, the company has developed a unique protection system. To prevent the risk of electric shock and high-energy short circuits, the automaker instituted a multi-stage high-voltage (HV) safety concept that comprises seven essential elements. In addition to the battery, HV components comprise all components with a voltage in excess of 60 volts. If a vehicle’s sensors detect a dangerous collision, the pyrofuse safety system automatically powers down the HV system.

This protection concept provides a high level of safety while driving and charging, as well as during and after a crash.

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