Toyota says that nearly all of its vehicles in the United States will have standard autonomous emergency braking by 2017.
That is four years earlier than the goal set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which is to make the technology standard across the entire industry by 2022.
Both Lexus and Toyota will offer their basic safety package, known as the Lexus Safety System + and Toyota Safety Sense, as standard equipment on twenty-five out of thirty models by the end of 2017. Both packages focus on three areas of safety and include three different safety systems: pre-collision, lane departure alert and automatic high beams.
The vehicles not getting the package as standard equipment by the end of 2017 include the Lexus GX, Toyota Mirai, 4Runner, 86 and Scion iA (soon to be the Toyota Yaris iA). Toyota does point out that the iA and the Mirai both have autonomous emergency braking as standard equipment already.
The pre-collision system works by using a camera and laser to detect the vehicle ahead and will first alert the driver if a collision is possible. If the driver suddenly brakes to avoid a collision, the system can provide additional braking force if necessary, while if a driver doesn’t brake and a collision is imminent, the system will automatically apply the brakes, reducing speeds by up to 19 mph.
Lane departure warning alerts the driver with an audible chime and visual alert when any of the wheels stray over the lane markings, while the automatic highbeams are able to switch on and off based on the headlights and taillights of other cars, to make sure you don’t blind other drivers on the road.