Automatic emergency braking (AEB) systems, ones that apply the brakes automatically if the driver fails to intervene to prevent a collision or reduce its severity, have proven to be very helpful in reducing numbers of crashes. A past IIHS study found that cars with automatic emergency braking were in 50% fewer rear-end collisions. Systems that include pedestrian detection are also very effective, with equipped cars having 27% fewer collisions with pedestrians. But there are limits to these systems, and specifically in areas where collisions are fairly common. IIHS has previously noted that poor light can reduce the effectiveness of these systems. Now AAA has found that higher speeds and particular types of collisions need improvement.

The situations AAA tested included rear-end collisions at higher speeds than IIHS currently tests. The IIHS tests at speeds up to 25 mph. In its research, AAA found that 60% of rear-end crashes that result in injuries happen in areas with speed limits between 30 and 45 mph. As such, it tested systems at 30 mph and 40 mph with stationary dummy vehicles. AAA also tested with the other two most common injury-causing two-vehicle crashes that, when combined with rear-end collisions, result in 79% of injury-causing wrecks: T-bone collisions, and collisions with an oncoming car turning across traffic. These were tested at 30 mph. The test vehicles were popular models that come with standard automatic emergency braking that more people are likely to have and cover a wide array of designs and suppliers: a 2022 Chevy Equinox, 2022 Ford Explorer, 2022 Honda CR-V and 2022 Toyota RAV4.

While these collision prevention systems were designed for preventing lower-speed crashes, they proved to still be effective in reducing the severity of rear-end collisions. At 30 mph, every car alerted the driver to an impending collision and activated the brakes. The Toyota and Ford both managed to avoid a crash in all five attempts, too. The Equinox collided once, and the CR-V did twice, but in all those situations, both cars reduced speeds by more than 20 mph, reducing the severity.

Increasing the speeds to 40 mph resulted in more collisions, but still, every car raised a warning and applied the brakes. The Ford reduced speeds by 31.8 mph, despite hitting every time. The Equinox reduced speeds by 17.5 mph, which was less than the 30 mph test. The CR-V managed to avoid crashes twice, and it reduced the speed by 30.5 mph on average in collisions. The RAV4 had a somewhat confusing result. It managed to fully stop four out of the five times. But the time it did hit, it only dropped its speed by 7.9 mph.

2022 Chevy Equinox has a rear-end collision with a dummy car

The takeaway in the rear-end collisions is that automatic emergency braking systems are less effective at fully avoiding a collision at higher speeds, but they can still significantly reduce the severity of the crash. Automakers are also working on systems that are more effective at higher speeds. Chevy in fact offers a system called Enhanced Automatic Emergency Braking designed for higher speeds. It’s offered as an option on some models such as the Tahoe/Suburban, Bolt EUV and Traverse. Though actual availability may be low due to chip supply issues. The IIHS also announced earlier this year that it’s looking at increasing its AEB testing speeds. So odds are that performance in this area, while not terrible, will probably improve significantly in the near future.

While the results for rear-end collisions isn’t too bad, the other types of collisions are a problem area for the current AEB systems. With cross-traffic T-bone collisions, and situations with another car turning in front of a driver, all vehicles hit every time. And in every test, each car failed to alert the driver or activate the brakes.

This is somewhat understandable, as most of these systems are only designed to help prevent rear-end collisions. Only recently have these systems started implementing pedestrian and cyclist detection, and the ability to detect cars or pedestrians in the path of the car when making turns at intersections. It’s also likely that these situations are more difficult to program the car to recognize and to do so without triggering false positives.

That being said, as these types of crashes are responsible for most injuries, it’s clear that automakers should focus on offering systems that can prevent those crashes.

Related video:

TECH NEWS RELATED

2022 Holiday Gift Guide | Autoblog Staff Picks

Autoblog may receive a share from purchases made via links on this page. Pricing and availability are subject to change. With the holidays around the corner, Autoblog has come together to create our holiday gift guide for the year. If you’re looking for some gift ideas for a loved ...

View more: 2022 Holiday Gift Guide | Autoblog Staff Picks

Tesla drivers say they've faced road rage and heckling

Mike Blake/Reuters Tesla drivers say they’ve faced harassment since they started driving the EV, The Guardian reported. The electric-car owners say they’ve been heckled and cut off in traffic due to anti-EV sentiment. Tesla cars are equipped with multiple cameras that have publicly documented the incidents. Tesla drivers claim ...

View more: Tesla drivers say they've faced road rage and heckling

Hertz to pay $168 million for falsely accusing drivers of stealing cars

Hertz customers who said they were wrongly accused of stealing cars from the rental firm will receive about $168 million to resolve almost all the claims they have filed. Hertz CEO Stephen Scherr earlier his year blamed the mistake on a “glitch” in the company’s data systems. The parent ...

View more: Hertz to pay $168 million for falsely accusing drivers of stealing cars

Camaro Driver Shows Off, Crowd Almost Pays The Price

He almost did a Mustang! After countless hours of research, we’ve noticed a trend you probably are well aware of: too many Mustang drivers plow into crowds while leaving car meets. Fans of the pony car can get all bent out of shape about this fact and try explaining ...

View more: Camaro Driver Shows Off, Crowd Almost Pays The Price

Bentley Flying Spur Gets Shadowy Makeover From Shoe Customizer

Custom emblems decorate the cabin.

View more: Bentley Flying Spur Gets Shadowy Makeover From Shoe Customizer

2022 Best SUV: Kia Sportage Hybrid Wins Motor1.com Star Award

Even against luxury alternatives from BMW and perpetual front-runners from Honda, the Kia Sportage Hybrid ticked all the right boxes.

View more: 2022 Best SUV: Kia Sportage Hybrid Wins Motor1.com Star Award

Tesla Calls Media Reports Of Potential Production Cuts In China False

Several media outlets are pointing to Tesla's potential for upcoming production cuts in China by up to 20 percent.

View more: Tesla Calls Media Reports Of Potential Production Cuts In China False

Jeep Recalls Wrangler 4xe After 2 Accidents and 1 Injury

Jeep has just announced a recall of 63,000 Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrids. Some drivers have experienced power unexpectedly shutting off, with two accidents and one injury reported. The recall is for 2021 to 2023 Wrangler 4xe models. Since the beginning of November, Jeep says it is aware of 112 customer ...

View more: Jeep Recalls Wrangler 4xe After 2 Accidents and 1 Injury

Best Cheap Car Insurance: Massachusetts (2022)

This C7 Corvette Ejected Its Whole Engine in a Highway Crash

Jeep Wrangler 4xe Recalled For Software Fault

Listen to the Incredible Sound of a Straight-Piped C8 Corvette Z06

YouTuber Takes On Norwegian Trans Euro Trail Aboard Yamaha T7

The Most Underrated U.S. Cities to Visit in Every State

Munro EV Looks Like Tesla Cybertruck and INEOS Grenadier's Love Child

A 2023 Subaru BRZ Limited Manual Joins Our Long-Term Fleet

Port reports profits drop

Million-milestone looms for market

Toyota Corolla Cross H2 Concept Has GR Corolla Engine, Runs On Hydrogen

Tesla nearly doubles sales in Germany in November

OTHER TECH NEWS

Top Car News Car News