Are you prone to running into things? Reflexes too slow to react to vehicles crossing your path? Rubbish at driving? If you answered yes to any of these, you should seriously consider opening your eyes, handing in your license, or at the very least buying a new Ford Fiesta.
The latest iteration of Ford’s long-running city car now features Active City Stop, a system that automatically activates the brakes for you when it thinks you’re about to plough into the back of another vehicle. According to Ford, it’s capable of preventing crashes entirely when driving at speeds of up to 10mph, or reducing the severity of impacts at speeds below 20mph.
The Fiesta’s Active City Stop is identical to the system that has already been deployed on the Ford Focus, C-MAX, Grand C-MAX and the new Ford B-MAX. It works by using a light-detecting and ranging sensor that scans the road ahead 50 times every second, and applying the full force of the ABS brakes if an object is detected within the vehicle’s path.
It’s so effective, Ford is willing to provide a 15 per cent discount from the first year of cover if owners take out insurance with its own Ford Insure service.
“Urban areas are breeding grounds for low-speed accidents caused by drivers failing to notice that the car in front has stopped,” commented Florian Schweter, Ford of Europe’s Fiesta Active City Stop development engineer. “High traffic volumes, lots of potential distractions and slow-moving, stop-start traffic mean Active City Stop can provide a much-needed extra eye on the road.”
You can see the system in action for yourself in the video below. It’s available as part of the optional Driver Assistance Pack on the new Fiesta, which is priced at £250 and also includes rear parking sensors and power folding mirrors.