Innovative features in Japanese minicars

Shared features include automatic brakes and smartphone connectivity

2015/07/28

Summary

Daihatsu Move
Daihatsu Move featuring many advanced driving assistance systems (Source: Response)

・This report outlines feature availability on the new minicar models (under 660cc) released for sale in Japan from November 2014 to June 2015. Six new and redesigned models are Honda S660 and N-BOX Slash, Suzuki Alto Lapin and Every Wagon, and Daihatsu Move and Wake.

・The features made available on all the six new models include the Electronic Stability Control (ESC), collision mitigation brakes (for vehicles), and navigation systems with smartphone connectivity.

・Increased adoption of the side airbags for front seats, curtain airbags for front and rear seats, monitors to display a bird's eye view, LED headlamps and seat heaters for drivers.




Advanced features made available by Honda, Suzuki and Daihatsu on their new minicar models

(New models launched in Japan from November 2014 to June 2015)
Equipment Models
Driving performance ESC All the six models
Collision safety Side airbags for front seats &
curtain airbags for front and rear seats
Honda N-BOX Slash, Daihatsu Move
Driving/parking
assistance
Omni-directional monitor Suzuki Alto Lapin
Rear camera (with a bird's-eye view) Suzuki Every Wagon, Daihatsu Move
Collision mitigation brake at low speeds (for vehicles) All the six models
Collision warning (for pedestrians) Daihatsu Move
Lane departure warning Daihatsu Move
Visibility LED headlamps Honda S660, Daihatsu Move/Wake
Comfort/convenience Seat heater for driver Honda N-BOX Slash, Suzuki Alto Lapin/
Every Wagon, Daihatsu Move/Wake
Navigation system with smartphone connectivity All the six models

New model features reports:
  Increased prevalence of advanced safety packages on new Japanese models (Jul. 2015),
  Major features of new Hyundai-Kia lineup highlighted by increased use of ADAS (Jun. 2015),
  German OEMs expand use of connected technologies on new models (Nov. 2014),
  Features on new European models: PSA, Renault, FCA, GM, Ford and Volvo (Jan. 2015),
  New U.S. models increase adoption of features like rear view cameras (Aug. 2014)



Honda adopts handling assist; Daihatsu employs aerodynamic fin

 Among the features for driving performance, Honda has adopted the Agile Handling Assist on the S660 mini sports car. The S660 is the first minicar to have a handling assistance system. Meanwhile Daihatsu has employed the aerodynamic fin on its model for the first time. The fins on the Wake mini spacious wagon contribute to improving driving stability.

 Regarding collision safety equipment, Honda has developed the world's first airbag for the front passenger which holds internal pressure for a longer period of time and installed it in the S660. Besides, Honda and Daihatsu expanded use of the side airbags for front seats and curtain airbags for front and rear seats.

 

Honda S660 Daihatsu Wake
Honda S660 mini sports car (Source: Honda's press release) Daihatsu Wake mini ultra space wagon (Source: Response)

 

Features for driving performance (including fuel efficiency) and collision safety on new minicars

"S" Standard on all grades, "A" Standard on some grades, "O" Optional
OEM Honda Suzuki Daihatsu
Model S660 N-BOX Slash Alto Lapin Every Wagon Move Wake
Mini sports car Mini wagon with high roof Mini hatchback Mini wagon Mini wagon with high roof Mini spacious wagon
Launch timing Apr. 2015 Dec. 2014 Jun. 2015 Feb. 2015 Dec. 2014 Dec. 2014
Driving
performance
(including
fuel
efficiency)
ESC (VSA by Honda, ESP by Suzuki, and VSC by Daihatsu) S S S S S S
Agile Handling Assist
(1 in the Table below)
S
Aerodynamic Fin
(2 in the Table below)
A
Ene-Charge (brake energy regeneration system) A
CVT Thermo Controller S S
Start-stop system A S A S S
Collision
safety
Front passenger's i-SRS airbag system (internal pressure holding type) (3 in the Table below) S
Front seat SRS side airbags O S
Front seat i-side airbag systems (Variable volume type) S A
SRS Curtain shield airbags for front and rear seats A O
Source: Honda, Suzuki and Daihatsu's press releases on new models and on-line catalogs of early July 2015
(Note) 1. Suzuki redesigned and released the Alto minicar in December 2014 and the Lapin, the Alto's variant, in June 2015. This table shows feature availability of the Lapin.
2. After the Daihatsu Move was redesigned in December 2014, the model received a facelift in April 2015. This table shows the features of the facelifted Move.

 

Advanced features made available by Honda
(1)
Agile Handling Assist
 (First for minicar) This handling assistance system was adopted on a minicar for the first time. The system uses the brake to control the vehicle movement and enhances responsiveness when a vehicle is cornering and ability to trace the desired line through a curve.
(3)
Front passenger's i-SRS airbag system (Internal pressure holding type)
 (World's first) This airbag featuring the internal pressure holding system has been designed for the front passenger whose distance to the airbag is usually longer than that of the driver. An airbag has a vent hole for discharging internal gas to absorb the collision energy. This airbag has a vent hole in a slit form which does not open until it receives an occupant. This design allowsthe airbag to maintain internal pressure for a longer period of time, resulting in improved occupant protection.
Advanced feature made available by Daihatsu
(2)
Aerodynamic fin
 (First for Daihatsu model) With a focus on the airflow, Daihatsu has employed the aerodynamic fin to increase straight line stability. Fitted at the door mirror bases and tail lamps, the fins contribute to the improvement of driving stability.

 

 



Increased availability of rear view monitors and collision mitigation brakes

Suzuki Alto Lapin
Suzuki Alto Lapin equipped with omni-directional monitor (Source: Suzuki's press release)

 Regarding the driving and parking assistance features, Suzuki has adopted the omni-directional monitor on the Alto Lapin mini hatchback. Suzuki and Daihatsu have installed the rear view camera with an added function to display a bird's- eye view. Including the ordinary rear view cameras, all the six new models have employed the rear view monitors. The rear view monitors were added as a requirement for a new rating by the JNCAP Preventive Safety Performance Assessment from the fiscal year ending in March 2016.

 As for the active safety features, all the six new models have installed the collision mitigation brakes at low speeds (for vehicles) and the gas pedal misoperation control systems (forward). Daihatsu's Move which has adopted the company's crash-avoidance assistance system "Smart Assist II" features the collision warning for pedestrians, lane departure warning, and reversing control capabilities (rearward).


Features for driving and parking assistance on new minicars

OEM Honda Suzuki Daihatsu
Model S660 N-BOX Slash Alto Lapin Every Wagon Move Wake
Launch timing Apr. 2015 Dec. 2014 Jun. 2015 Feb. 2015 Dec. 2014 Nov. 2014
Driving/
parking
assistance
Omni-directional monitor
(1 in the Table below)
O
Rear camera (three-mode selection & steering guide lines)
(2 in the Table below)
O
Back-eye camera
(3 in the Table below)
O
Rear camera O A O
Emergency stop signal S S S S S S
Electronically controlled parking brake S
Cruise control system A A
"D assist" power mode steering switch (4 in the Table below) S
SPORT switch
(5 in the Table below)
A
Mode Switching Steering
(6 in the Table below)
S
ECON mode S
Eco drive assist illumination A A S S
Smart Assist crash-avoidance assist system
(7 in the Table below)
A
Smart Assist II crash-avoidance assist system
(8 in the Table below)
A
Collision mitigation brake at low speeds (for vehicles)
(9 in the Table below)
O A S S A A
Gas pedal misoperation control (forward) O A S S A A
Notification of motion of a vehicle in front A A
Collision warning
(for pedestrians)
A
Reversing control capabilities (rearward) A
Lane departure warning A

Source: Honda, Suzuki and Daihatsu's press releases on new models and on-line catalog of early July 2015

 

Advanced features made available by Honda
(5)
SPORT Switch
 By pressing the switch by the meters to activate the SPORT mode, the driver can have more direct response to accelerator operations. The ambient light of the meters turn red while the boost meter replaces the instantaneous mileage gauge. In the SPORT mode, the start-stop system is deactivated.
(6)
Mode Switching Steering
 The system enables the driver to select between two modes of power steering assist with a switch on the instrument panel. While the steering feels rather heavy in the standard mode, the lighter mode can be selected depending on the driver's taste.
(9)
Collision mitigation brake at low speeds (for vehicles)
 Honda calls the system the City Brake Active System. It uses laser radar to detect a preceding vehicle when driving at speeds of 5-30 km/h. If the system senses a risk of a collision, collision mitigation function will be activated.
Advanced features made available by Suzuki
(1)
Omni-directional monitor
 This monitor uses four cameras mounted on the front, rear and both sides of the vehicle to display the bird's-eye view of the surrounding conditions on the seven-inch screen. Providing the views for the driver's blind spots, it assists the driver in parallel parking in tight spots, passing other vehicles on narrow streets, and pulling out of the spot with poor visibility.
(3)
Back-eye camera
 The system has two functions to support rearward monitoring. Left and right checking support during reversing: When shifting the vehicle into reverse, the monitor screen displays the rear view. If the system detects other cars and persons approaching the vehicle from behind on either side, the driver will be alerted with a flashing indicator on the screen and a buzzer.
 Automatic overhead viewing: When the vehicle approaches the parking position in reverse parking, the screen automatically displays a bird's-eye view to show the space behind the vehicle.
(9)
Collision mitigation brake at low speeds (for vehicles)
 Suzuki calls the system the Radar Brake Support. The system uses laser radar to detect a preceding car when driving at speeds of 5-30 km/h. If it senses a risk of a collision, the collision mitigation function is activated. The system helps prevent a collision when the speed difference between the vehicle and the preceding car is less than 15 km/h. If the difference is under 30 km/h, it helps reduce damages in the event of a collision.
Advanced features made available by Daihatsu
(2)
Rear camera (three-mode selection & steering guide lines)
 In addition to the normal view, the driver is now able to select two other modes: the top-down view and the wide view. The top-down view offers the image as if the camera were looking down on the vehicle from above to support parking maneuver. The system also added the steering guide lines which synchronize with steering movement and indicate the best route to follow.
(4)
"D assist" power mode steering switch
 (First for minicar) The "power mode" can be selected with pressing its steering switch. In the power mode, by changing the engine and CVT control, responsiveness of the accelerator pedal is enhanced to enable stress-free driving in initial acceleration and hill climbing.
(7)
Smart Assist
 Daihatsu's crash-avoidance assistance system uses laser radar and sonar sensors to offer functions including low speed crash-avoidance braking, false start control, and preceding vehicle start notification.
(8)
Smart Assist II
 In addition to laser radar and sonar sensors adopted in conventional Smart Assist, Smart Assist II employs a monocular camera to add new features and improve existing functions.
New
functions
Collision warning function (for pedestrians)  When a vehicle is traveling at speeds of 4- 50 km/h, the system uses a monocular camera to detect a pedestrian in front of the vehicle. If a risk of a collision is detected, the driver will be alerted with a buzzer and a warning lamp inside the meter.
Lane departure warning function  When driving at speeds above 60 km/h, the system uses a monocular camera to detect the lines of the lanes. If the system detects that the vehicle departs from the lane without turning on the blinkers, the driver will be alerted with a buzzer and a warning lamp inside the meter.
Reversing control capabilities  (First for minicar) When the sonar sensor detects a wall or other obstacles in two to three meters behind the vehicle, and the driver presses down hard on the accelerator pedal, the system alerts the driver with a buzzer as well as an indicator lamp and stops the engine output for eight seconds to prevent a sudden start.
Enhanced
functions
Crash-avoidance braking function  The system identifies a preceding vehicle when driving at speeds of 4- 50 km/h (conventionally 4-30 km/h) and applies the emergency brakes if a collision is imminent to help avoid a collision or reduce damages resulting from a collision (The system is activated when the speed difference is within 30 km/h.)
Collision warning (for vehicles)  The system identifies a preceding vehicle while driving at speeds of 4-100 km/h (conventionally 4-30 km/h) and alerts the driver with a buzzer and an indicator lamp inside the meter if a risk of a collision is detected. (The system is activated when the speed difference is within 60 km/h.)

 

 



Navigation systems with smartphone connectivity available on all six minicars

 Among the features to enhance visibility, Honda's S660 and Daihatsu's Move and Wake have employed the LED headlamps. The automatically retractable door mirrors have been made available on four new models.

 Regarding the features for comfort and convenience, Honda has adopted the air conditioner with "mid mode" designed for convertibles on the S660. Use of the seat heaters has expanded: five new models come with the seat heaters for the drivers; Honda's N-BOX Slash and Suzuki's Alto Lapin are also equipped with those for the front passengers. Suzuki's Every Wagon adopted the electric auto step on the left side of the rear seats. The navigation systems with smartphone connectivity (which enables access to the smartphone applications on the onboard systems by connecting the compatible smartphones) have been made available on all the new models.

 

Honda N-BOX Slash Suzuki Every Wagon
Honda N-BOX Slash equipped with seat heaters
for front seats (Source: Honda's press release)
Suzuki Every Wagon featuring electric auto step
(Source: Suzuki's press release)

 

Features for visibility and comfort/convenience on new mini vehicles

OEM Honda Suzuki Daihatsu
Model S660 N-BOX Slash Alto Lapin Every Wagon Move Wake
Launch timing Apr. 2015 Dec. 2014 Jun. 2015 Feb. 2015 Dec. 2014 Nov. 2014
Visibility Discharge headlamps A A
LED headlamps S O S
Automatic headlight system S S A A A A
Retractable door mirror (automatic) A A A A
Heated door mirror A S AO AO
Windshield deicer O
Fully automatic air-conditioning unit with "mid mode"
(1 in the Table below)
S
Fully automatic air conditioner with "nanoe" air purifying system A
Comfort/ convenience Seat heater for driver A S A O AO
Seat heater for front passenger A A
Heated steering wheel A
Cold Storage Evaporator (A cold insulator delivers cool air when the start-stop system shuts down the engine.) A A
Electric auto step (for the left side of the rear seats)
(2 in the Table below)
A
One touch winker/Indicator switch featuring one-touch turn signal capabilities S S S
Two-stage adjustable deck board (for placing cargoes in the trunk) AO
Pure Sound Booth
(3 in the Table below)
O
Sound Mapping System (high-end audio system) AO
Multi information display S S S S
Meter voice guidance A
Wireless charging device AO
Navigation system with smartphone connectivity O O A O O O

Source: Honda, Suzuki and Daihatsu's press releases on new models and on-line catalog of early July 2015

 

Advanced features made available by Honda
(1)
Fully automatic air-conditioning unit with "mid mode"
 The air-conditioning unit designed for convertibles features the "mid mode" which delivers cool or warm air around the occupants' thighs and waists for summer or winter days.
(3)
Pure Sound Booth
 The sound absorbing kit called "Pure Sound Booth" installs sound absorbing sheets and sound absorbing mats in the door and tail gate panels to improve the quietness and reduce the vibrations in the vehicle. This kit helps improve quality of the acoustic effect as well as comfort for the occupants.
Advanced feature made available by Suzuki
(2)
Electric auto step
 Working with the opening and closing of the left sliding door, the electric auto step appears and retracts. With the height of 220 mm from the ground, the step helps the occupants get in and out of the vehicle more smoothly.

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