Göteborg, Sweden - Volvo says its all-new XC90 - which will be revealed in August - will offer the most comprehensive and technologically sophisticated standard safety package in the industry, taking the company a significant step closer to its vision that nobody will be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo car by 2020.
The standard safety package of the all-wheel drive, seven-seat premium SUV will include two safety technologies that Volvo claims as world firsts: a run-off road protection package and auto braking at intersections
Running off the road is a common accident type with different causes, such as driver distraction, fatigue or poor weather conditions, and is responsible for half of all traffic fatalities in the United States.
The new XC90 detects when it is about to run off the road.
It pre-tensions the front seat belts to keep the occupants in position, keeping them firmly tightened until the car stops moving.
Energy-absorbing functionality between the seat and seat frame cushions vertical forces, reducing their impact by as much as a third, to help prevent serious spinal injuries that frequently happen when the car bangs down on to a hard surface.
But first prize would be to keep the car on the road, which is why the XC90 also has lane-keeping assist, that applies extra steering torque if the car is about to leave the lane unintentionally, as well as a driver alert control to detect and warn tired or inattentive drivers and even rest stop guidance to direct the driver to the nearest rest area.
AUTO BRAKE AT INTERSECTIONS
The new XC90, says Volvo, is the first car that brakes automatically if the driver turns in front of an oncoming car - a common scenario at busy city crossings as well as on highways, where the speed limits are higher.
The car detects a potential crash and brakes automatically in order to avoid a collision or mitigate the consequences of a crash.
This is Volvo's umbrella term for all the car's automatic braking functions, there to help the driver when there's a high risk of collision with another vehicle, pedestrian or cyclist, through an intuitive warning strategy and a brake support system.
If a collision is almost unavoidable, the system will provide autonomous braking when the driver fails to respond to the imminent threat.
Also standard is roll stability control, using sensors to calculate the risk of rolling the car; if the risk is high, it'll restrict engine torque and apply some braking force to one or more wheels to counteract the sideways forces
If a roll is inevitable, seat-belt pre-tensioners on all seven seats pull tight and inflatable curtains are activated, covering all three seat rows for an extended period of time to help prevent head injuries.
Also available on the new XC90 is rear-end collision assist, with rear-facing radar to detect an imminent rear impact; it starts flashing the hazard lights to warn the oncoming driver, pre-tensions all the seatbelts and applies the brakes to minimise the impact.
COMMUTE WITH CONFIDENCE
The optional blind spot information system not only informs about vehicles in the car's blind spots but also warns the driver about vehicles approaching fast from behind.
Adaptive cruise control with optional queue assist automatically controls the steering, acceleration and brakes to follow the car in front, while keeping a safe distance, in slow-moving traffic.
Park assist pilot uses 12 ultrasonic sensors to reverse the car automatically into a parking bay, as well as driving into or out of a parallel parking spot. It also has four concealed fisheye cameras that provide a bird's eye view of the car and its surroundoigs, as well as a cross-traffic alert to warn of traffic approaching from the side when you're backing out of a driveway into a busy road.