25 years ago, Mercedes invented automatic emergency braking
Sometimes it feels like Mercedes has invented, pioneered or improved just about every car feature you can think of, including automatic emergency braking. Sort of.
In the early 1990s, Mercedes began conducting a series of tests and found out that in an emergency situation, drivers tend to step on the brake pedal as fast as they can but without enough force. In 1996, Mercedes revealed a new system called BAS, Brake Assist System.
It was available in the 140 S-Class and the R 129 SL, and it automatically detected whether the brake pedal had been pressed out of panic or as part of a standard braking manoeuvre and compensated if needed. At 60 mph, for example, it shortened the braking distance by up to 45%.
In order to perfect the BAS, Mercedes combined data from the traditional ABS, the traction control, the ESP and the limited-slip diff. The BAS is basically the grandfather of automatic braking systems that we find in modern cars.
Have you ever driven a car with automatic braking or a similar system/feature?