US models feature increased use of automatic braking systems

GM, Ford and Chrysler add advanced equipment to new models



Cadillac ATS
Cadillac ATS

 Reported below is feature availability on new models (new and fully-remodeled passenger cars and light trucks) released for sale in the U.S. by GM, Ford and Chrysler in and after August 2012. Equipment that has been increasingly adopted includes the active grille shutters for enhanced fuel efficiency, the driver knee airbags, the automatic braking systems, the active park assists which steers the vehicle into the parking space, the active noise controls to cancel the noise with the counteractive sound waves, and the customer configurable instrument clusters.

Advanced equipment made available by GM, Ford and Chrysler in their new models launched in the US in and after August 2012

Driving performance
(including fuel efficiency)
Roll stability control Ford C-Max, Jeep Cherokee, Jeep Grand Cherokee
Active grille shutter Chevrolet Impala, Cadillac ATS, Ford C-Max
Collision safety Driver knee airbag Chevrolet Impala, Chevrolet Spark, Buick Encore,
Cadillac ATS, Lincoln MKZ, Ford C-Max,
Jeep Grand Cherokee, SRT Viper
Side airbags for rear outboard
seating positions
All GM models, Jeep Cherokee
Driving/parking assist Crash-imminent braking Chevrolet Impala, Cadillac ATS, Jeep Cherokee
Active park assist Lincoln MKZ, Ford C-Max, Jeep Cherokee
Visibility Automatic high beam control Lincoln MKZ, Jeep Grand Cherokee
Adaptive forward lighting Cadillac ATS, Lincoln MKZ, Jeep Grand Cherokee
Comfort/convenience Active noise control Chevrolet Silverado, Chevrolet Impala,
Buick Encore, Lincoln MKZ
Configurable instrument cluster Cadillac ATS, Lincoln MKZ,
Jeep Cherokee, Jeep Grand Cherokee, SRT Viper
Related Reports:
Features on new Japanese models (Jul. 2013), Equipment on new European models (1) (Oct. 2012), (2) (Oct. 2012)
Features on new Hyundai/Kia vehicles (Sep. 2012)

GM: advanced driving assist systems on Chevrolet Impala and Cadillac ATS

 GM has installed a number of advanced driving assist systems including the full-speed range adaptive cruise control and the collision imminent braking system on the Chevrolet Impala full-size sedan and the Cadillac ATS compact sedan.

 Among the comfort and convenient systems, Chevrolet's latest MyLink infotainment system, allows for personalization of the home screen and offers a "valet mode" to shield personal items and information. The system will be available on the new Impala released in April 2013, The Chevrolet Silverado (the GMC Sierra is its sister model), a full-size pickup, employs smart solutions for cargo management. These include the CornerStep bumper with integrated steps at each corner of the rear bumper, the EZ lift and lower tailgate which opens without a thud and can be closed with one hand, and the under-rail LED lighting that makes it easier to see items in the bed with a tonneau cover on.

GM: main features on new Chevrolet/Buick/Cadillac brand models launched in the U.S. from August 2012 to June 2013

"S" Standard on all grades, "A" Standard on some grades, "O" Optional
Model Chevrolet
Launch time May 2013 Apr. 2013 Jan. 2013 Aug. 2012 Aug. 2012
(including fuel
Electronic Sway Control S
Cornering brake control S
Magnetic Ride Control O
Active grille shutters S A
Dual-stage frontal airbags S S S S
Frontal airbags S
Side-impact airbags for driver and
front passenger
Side-impact airbags for rear
outboard seating positions
Head curtain airbags for front and
rear outboard seating positions
Knee airbags for driver and front passenger S S S S
Forward Collision Alert O AO A A
Lane Departure Warning O AO A A
Side Blind Zone Alert AO O
Rear Cross Traffic Alert AO O
Full-speed range adaptive cruise control
(1 in Table below)
Crash-imminent braking/Automatic
Collision Preparation (2 in Table below)
Front/Rear Automatic Brake
(3 in Table below)
Active Safety Seat (4 in Table below) O O
Hill Descent Control A
Hill Start Assist S S
Rear Vision Camera A AO S AO
Front Park Assist O A A
Rear Park Assist O AO A A
Visibility Automatic headlamps S S S S S
Adaptive Forward Lighting A
Power & heated exterior mirrors A A
Power adjustable, heated and
auto-dimming outside mirrors
Auto-dimming rearview mirror AO A A
Rainsense front wipers A A
Dual-zone automatic climate control A A A S
Heated driver and front passenger seats A A A O
Heated and cooled seating O
Heated steering wheel O A O
Active noise cancellation system
(5 in Table below)
Remote vehicle starter system A A
Reconfigurable 5.7-inch instrument
cluster display (6 in Table below)
Reconfigurable Head-Up Display A
EZ-Lift and Lower tailgate A
CornerStep bumper S
Under-rail LED lighting O
Illuminating Door Handles A
Hidden storage behind 8-inch touch screen
(7 in Table below)
Chevrolet MyLink (Chevrolet's infotainment system ) (8 in Table below) A A A
Buick IntelliLink
(Buick's infotainment system)
CUE (Cadillac's infotainment system)
(9 in Table below)
OnStar (GM's telematics system) A S S S S

Source: GM's press releases on new models, Chevrolet/Buick/Cadillac brand on-line catalogs of late July 2013
(Note) The Chevrolet Silverado and the GMC Sierra are sister models. The table above represents availability of the features on the Chevrolet Silverado.


GM: major advanced features
Full-speed range adaptive cruise control
 (First application on a Chevrolet) This system uses a radar sensor to monitor traffic in front and adjusts the vehicle speed to maintain a preset distance from the car ahead. When a preceding car stops, the system brings a vehicle to a full stop. It is useful in heavy traffic where vehicles should stop and go repeatedly.
Crash-imminent braking/Automatic Collision Preparation
 (First application on a Chevrolet) The automatic braking system is called the crash-imminent braking by Chevrolet and the automatic collision preparation by Cadillac. The system utilizes a radar sensor to detect a possible crash threat and alerts a driver. If the driver does not appear to react quickly enough, the system applies the brakes in an effort to avoid the crash or to mitigate damages.
Front/Rear Automatic Brake
 This feature uses ultrasonic sensors to detect obstacles and alerts the driver through a series of automated cues and/or preventive braking to avoid low-speed collisions. For example, when the vehicle starts to proceed on a green light, the system will alert and deploy the brake to help prevent an impact if the leading vehicle stops unexpectedly.
Active Safety Seat
 The active safety seat alerts the driver from the lane departure warning and forward collision alert system with vibrations of the driver's seat. This feature uses directional seat vibrations on either the left or right side of the seat cushion, depending on the location of the threat.
Active noise cancellation system
 With the active noise cancelation system, ceiling-mounted microphones detect engine noise, the frequencies of which are processed by a computer that directs counteracting sound waves through the audio system's speakers and subwoofers. This technology helps eliminate noise levels associated with torque converter lockup at low speeds, which provides better fuel economy. The Encore is the first Buick model that has adopted this feature.
Reconfigurable 5.7-inch instrument cluster display
 The 5.7-inch LCD screen on the instrument panel displays customizable vehicle information including average fuel economy, tire pressure, and other data.
Hidden storage behind 8-inch touch screen
 A hidden bin has been created behind the 8-inch infotainment touch screen. When the users push the switch under the touch screen, it slides up to reveal the storage so that they can store personal items such as their wallet or phone.
Chevrolet MyLink
 The new Impala's next-generation MyLink has a smart phone-inspired feature that allows users to change the personality of the home screen. Four specific graphic appearances for home screen icons include a clean and simple interface and pop-culture style icons. MyLink users are also able to edit the home screen by dragging icons to top of the page for easy access from any screen.
 The next-generation MyLink offers "Valet Mode" for protecting valuable items and personal information. The users are able to access the valet mode through MyLink's Setting menu via a four-digit code, much like a hotel safe. In the valet mode, MyLink locks the bin behind the touch screen and secures personal information such as phone numbers stored on MyLink until the PIN will be entered again.
 The next-generation MyLink represents Chevrolet's first use of natural voice recognition. Another first feature for Chevrolet is that the system can store up to 60 favorites, including phone numbers, radio stations, and destinations.
 Cadillac User Experience (CUE), Cadillac's new-generation infotainment system, includes the 8-inch touch screen which resembles a smart phone's screen. This screen enables intuitive gesture controls such as tap, swipe, and drag, haptic feedback, proximity sensing, voice recognition, pairing with up to 10 Bluetooth-compatible mobile devices, and storing up to 60 favorites.



Ford: sophisticated driving performance features on Lincoln MKZ

 Ford has adopted numerous advanced features for the Lincoln MKZ midsize sedan (Ford Fusion is its sister model). The model comes standard with the Lincoln Drive Control that orchestrates the performance of the suspension, engine, and ESC. Its driving assist features include the push-button shift that replaces the mechanical transmission shift lever with a five-button interface as well as a number of preventive safety systems including the blind spot information and the lane keeping system. For visibility improvement, the LED headlamps and the auto high beams which automatically switch high/low beams are installed.

 Among the comfort/convenient features, the SmartGauge with EcoGuide is used by the hybrid and plug-in hybrid models of the Ford C-Max compact MPV and the hybrid model of the Lincoln MKZ. On the LCD panels on both sides of the speedometer, this system displays real-time vehicle information selected by the driver including average/instantaneous fuel economy and engine/ battery output power to help the driver achieve better fuel economy.

Ford: main features on new Ford/Lincoln brand models launched in the US from October 2012 to the beginning of 2013

"S" Standard on all grades, "A" Standard on some grades, "O" Optional
Model Lincoln MKZ Ford C-Max
Midsize sedan Compact MPV
Launch time Early 2013 Oct. 2012
(including fuel
Roll Stability Control S
Curve Control S S
Torque Vectoring Control S
Active Grill Shutters S
Lincoln Drive Control (1 in Table below) S
Intelligent all-wheel drive A
Dual-stage front airbags S
Front airbags S
Front-seat side-impact airbags S S
Side-curtain airbags S S
Driver's knee airbag S
Front knee airbags S
Inflatable rear seat belts O
Emergency Brake Assist S
SOS Post-Crash Alert S
Blind Spot Information System O
Integrated blind spot mirrors S
Cross-traffic alert O
Lane Keeping System (2 in Table below) O
Adaptive cruise control O
Reverse sensing system O AO
Forward sensing system O
Rear view camera O O
Rear parking aid O
Active park assist (3 in Table below) O O
Push-button shift (4 in Table below) S
Visibility Automatic headlamps S S
Adaptive LED headlamps S
Auto high beams O
Auto-dimming rearview mirror S
Auto-dimming driver's side mirror O
Rain-Sensing Wipers O A
Dual-zone electronic automatic temperature control S S
Heated Front Seats S AO
Heated Rear Seats O
Cooled Front Seats O
Heated steering wheel O
Remote Engine Start S O
SmartGauge with EcoGuide
(for hybrid(HV), plug-in-hybrid (PHV)) (5 in Table below)
Foot-Activated Liftgate (6 in Table below) O
SYNC with MyFord/MyLincoln Touch (Infotainment system) S AO
Voice-activated Navigation System O O
10.1-inch LCD instrument cluster (reconfigurable) (7 in Table below) S
Active Noise Control S
8-inch touch screen S
Retractable panoramic roof (8 in Table below) O
MyKey (9 in Table below) S
Source: Ford's press releases on new models, Ford/Lincoln brand on-line catalogs of late July 2013
(Note) 1. The Lincoln MKZ and the Ford Fusion are sister models. Besides gasoline models, the MKZ offers a hybrid model while the Fusion has a hybrid and plug-in-hybrid model. The table above represents availability of the features on the Lincoln MKZ (including the hybrid model).
2. The Ford C-Max introduced in the North American market is a hybrid-only model including a hybrid and a plug-in hybrid version.


Ford: major advanced features
Lincoln Drive Control
 The Lincoln Drive Control orchestrates the performance of continuously controlled damping suspension, electric power-assisted steering, engine, transmission, Active Noise Control, and stability control systems.
Lane Keeping System
 At speeds above 40 mph, lane markings in front are tracked by the rear view mirror-mounted monocular camera. When the system detects the vehicle drifting close to a lane marking, it notifies the driver through vibrations of the steering wheel. Going one step further, the system uses the electric power-assisted steering system to provide steering torque to direct the vehicle back toward the center of the lane.
Active park assist
 When activated, the system uses the ultrasonic sensors to identify a feasible parking space and steers the vehicle into the parking space hands-free. The driver only should shift the transmission and operate the gas and brake pedals. This feature parks the vehicle in 26 seconds at shortest.
Push-button shift
 This feature replaces the traditional transmission shift lever with the controls in a vertical series of five push-buttons on the center instrument panel. Eliminating the shift lever frees up space around the center console and enhances the clean, uncluttered appearance.
SmartGauge with EcoGuide
 Exclusive to the hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles, the SmartGauge with EcoGuide displays real-time driving information on the LCD panels on both sides of the speedometer to help the driver improve fuel economy. The latest system offers display mode options; the information available includes fuel level, battery charge status, average/lifetime/instantaneous fuel economy, engine output power and battery output power.
 The rightmost panel shows imagery of green leaves according to the present fuel economy and driving performance. As drivers improve their efficient driving, they are rewarded with more leaves, thereby arousing their interest in eco-friendly driving.
 Among the functions of the SmartGauge, the Eco Cruise Control works like standard cruise control, but maximizes the fuel efficiency by relaxing acceleration and slowing down when going uphill; the Brake Coach helps drivers optimize their use of the vehicle's regenerative brakes.
Foot-Activated Liftgate
 (Class-exclusive technology) With this system, users wearing the intelligent access key can open the liftgate by lightly kicking their foot under the rear bumper. The feature is useful for anyone with his/her hands full with luggage.
10.1-inch LCD instrument cluster
 10.1-inch LCD screen in front of a driver displays various gauges as well as vehicle and media information. The display items and styles can be customized by the owners.
Retractable panoramic roof
 The retractable panoramic roof is a 15.2 square feet motorized glass panel. The effective opening is the largest among sedans (based on Ford's research), measuring 1.9 feet deep and 2.5 feet wide. When the roof opens, the wind deflector automatically deploys at the forward end of the opening to reduce air flow into the cabin. The self-adjustable roof moves eight inches forward at speeds above 40 mph to maintain a quiet riding environment.
 The MyKey has a chip embedded in it to allow the owner to program the vehicle settings. This feature is useful when a teen has access to his/her parent's car as the parents can limit the top speed or the maximum volume on the audio system to encourage young drivers to drive safely.



Chrysler: brand's first advanced active safety features on Jeep Cherokee

 In the Jeep Grand Cherokee premium SUV, Chrysler has installed the Quandra-Lift Air Suspension which delivers off-road capability by adjusting the vehicle's ground clearance. In addition, the Grand Cherokee and the Cherokee, Jeep's midsize SUV, employ the Selec-Terrain Traction System that allows the driver to choose the terrain mode, thereby coordinating and optimizing the onboard systems on any terrain.

 The Jeep Cherokee expected to go on sale in the fall of 2013 will feature preventive safety systems which actively intervene if the situation becomes critical. Those include the Adaptive Cruise Control-Plus and the Forward Collision Warning-Plus, both of which apply the brakes if they detect a fast-approaching obstacle ahead. The Jeep Cherokee will be the first model for a Chrysler Group to feature these systems.

Chrysler: main features on new Jeep/SRT brand models (to be) launched in the US from the end of 2012 to fall of 2013

"S" Standard on all grades, "A" Standard on some grades, "O" Optional
Model Jeep
Jeep Grand
SRT Viper
Launch time Fall 2013 Apr. 2013 End of
Electronic Roll Mitigation S S
Multi-stage ESC (1 in Table below) S
Trailer Sway Control S
Active Damping Suspension A
Quadra-Lift Air Suspension (2 in Table below) AO
Electronic Limited-Slip Rear Differential AO
Trailer Sway Damping S
Dual mode adjustable suspension A
Advanced Multistage Front Airbags S S
Front Airbags S
Front Seat-Mounted Side Airbags S S
Rear Seat-Mounted Side Airbags S
Front and Rear Side-Curtain Airbags S S
Driver Inflatable Knee Bolster Airbag S
Knee Bolsters for front seat occupants S
Selec-Terrain Traction System (3 in Table below) A AO
Selec-Speed Control (Hill-ascent/descent Control) A
Hill Start Assist S S
Hill Descent Control A AO
Adaptive Cruise Control A AO
Adaptive Cruise Control-Plus (4 in Table below) O
Blind Spot Monitoring System AO
Rear Cross Path Detection System AO
Forward Collision Warning with Mitigation AO
Forward Collision Warning-Plus (5 in Table below) O
Lane Departure Warning-Plus (6 in Table below) O
Ready Alert Braking S
Rain Brake Support S
ParkView Rear Back-Up Camera A A AO
ParkSense Front/Rear Park Assist System A
ParkSense Parallel/Perpendicular Park Assist (7 in Table below) A
Visibility Automatic Headlamps A S S
Adaptive Bi-Xenon HID Headlamps AO
Automatic High Beam Headlamp Control AO
Auto-Dimming Rearview Mirror w/ Microphone AO
Auto-Dimming Rearview Mirror S
Auto-Dimming Exterior Passenger Mirror AO
Auto-Dimming Exterior Driver's Mirror A
Heated Outside Mirrors A
A/C Auto Temp Control w/ Dual Zone Control A S
Heated Front Seats AO
Heated Second-Row Seats A
Ventilated Front Seats AO
Heated Steering Wheel AO
Uconnect (infotainment system) S S S
7-inch Customer Configurable Multi-View Screen
(8 in Table below)
Roadside Assistance and 9-1-1 Call AO

Source: Chrysler's press releases on new models, Jeep/SRT brand on-line catalogs of late July 2013
(Note) The Jeep Grand Cherokee facelift was included in this report since the model has adopted a number of new features.


Chrysler: major advanced features
Multi-stage ESC
 The SRT Viper comes standard with the two-mode ESC (Full On and Full Off), while the Viper GTS with the four-mode ESC (Full On, Sport, Track, and Full Off). Thus, as drivers gain experience and confidence, they can opt to progressively reduce the amount of ESC assistance. Sport mode allows more longitudinal and lateral slip with reduced level of traction control. Competition-ready Track mode has no traction control and puts the driver's right foot in full control of rear wheels. In both modes, though, a certain level of stability control is maintained.
Quadra-Lift Air Suspension
 Quadra-Lift Air Suspension features five settings of ground clearance for various driving situations: Normal Ride Height (8.7 inches), Off road 1 (10.0 inches) and Off road 2 (11.3 inches) for clearing obstacles, Park Mode (7.1 inch) for easy ingress/egress to a car park, and Aero Mode (8.1 inch) for improved aerodynamics and fuel efficiency. A vehicle will lower to Aero Mode automatically when driving in Sport mode and Eco mode.
Selec-Terrain Traction System
 This feature allows the driver to choose a terrain mode from five options (Auto, Snow, Sport, Sand/Mud and Rock). It electronically coordinates and optimizes up to 12 systems, providing enhanced vehicle control on any terrain. Those systems include drivetrain control module, electronic brake controller, ESC, transmission controller, powertrain controller, and Selec-Speed Control.
Adaptive Cruise Control-Plus
 (First application on a Chrysler Group vehicle) The Adaptive Cruise Control-Plus uses radar and video sensors to identify the location of vehicles travelling ahead and helps ensure the preceding vehicles are separated by a preset gap through adjusting the vehicle speed. With added Plus function, the system deploys the brakes to bring the vehicle to a complete stop if the gap is dramatically breached.
Forward Collision Warning-Plus
 (First application in a Chrysler Group vehicle) The Forward Collision Warning-Plus system utilizes radar/video sensors to monitor the position of the preceding vehicle when Adaptive Cruise Control-Plus is inactive. If the sensors detect a fast-approaching obstacle ahead, the system delivers a warning. In addition to (1) audible and visual warnings, its Plus function (2) deploys a brief brake to alert the driver.  It then (3) applies a 1.5-second brake to quicken the driver's reaction time, and (4) activates the Advanced Brake Assist if the driver is not braking aggressively enough.
Lane Departure Warning-Plus
 (First application on a Chrysler Group vehicle) The Lane Departure Warning-Plus feature uses a camera-based vision sensor to identify the vehicle's position on the road. If an unintentional lane drift occurs, the system will deliver a visual warning and a haptic warning (by the subtle rotation from the electric power steering). If the driver drifts too far, the system provides a secondary visual warning.
ParkSense Parallel/ Perpendicular Park Assist
 (First application on a Chrysler Group vehicle) When the driver initiates the parking maneuver, the system uses ultrasonic sensors on the bumper to find and guide the driver into an available parking space. The parking guidance system controls the steering angle automatically for parallel/perpendicular parking while the driver only controls the gear position, brake and accelerator.
7-inch Customer Configurable Multi-View Screen
 This is a 7-inch customizable LCD panel placed in the center of gauge cluster. Customers are able to change the display in six areas: the central portion, the absolute center, and the four corners. They can change speedometer style as well as choose to display different items depending on their needs including vehicle information, outside temperature and fuel economy

<Automotive Industry Portal MarkLines>