Active safety: High stress-relieving comfort and better support in hazardous situations

Sep 4, 2018

The EQC (combined power consumption: 22.2 kWh/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 0 g/km, provisional data)1 is equipped with the latest-generation of Mercedes-Benz driving assistance systems, which provide cooperative support for drivers. In the Driving Assistance package, these include new functions such as predictive speed adjustment when approaching the end of a tailback: when a tailback is detected, Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC reduces the speed to around 100 km/h as a precaution. In the tailback itself, the lane guidance system keeps the vehicle off-centre to leave space for the emergency services.

Not only high-mileage drivers are familiar with this tricky situation on motorways: on rounding a bend, the end of a traffic tailback suddenly appears. This is where the EQC assists its driver – by recognising a tailback at an early stage and responding to it.

If Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC with route-based speed adaptation is activated, the EQC is able to recognise and respond to tailbacks or slow-moving traffic before the driver becomes aware of the hazard. When a tailback is recognised (and if the driver does not choose a different response), DISTRONIC reduces the speed to around 100 km/h as a precaution. This can significantly reduce the risk of approaching the end of an unexpected tailback at high speed.

When driving in tailbacks, the rescue lane function becomes active: When a tailback is recognised on a motorway, the speed is below 60 km/h and lane markings are recognised, the vehicle is guided along the outer lane marking without crossing it. If no lane markings are recognised, the EQC takes its lead from the vehicle ahead.

[1] Figures for power consumption and CO2 emissions are provisional and were determined by the German Technical Service corporation. The range figures are also provisional. EC type approval and conformity certification with official figures are not yet available. There may be differences between the stated figures and the official figures.

Following vehicles in a tailback: in stop-and-go traffic on motorways and similar roads, stops of up to 30 seconds are possible within which the EQC can automatically move off and follow the traffic ahead.

Once the tailback dissolves, the EQC accelerates back up to the speed preset for Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC with route-based speed adaptation. If the driver has not set a specific speed, this is the recommended motorway speed of 130 km/h in the case of Germany, and it can be individually adapted for the current motorway journey. If traffic signs differ from this, the signposted speed limit is given priority.

Within the entire speed range of the EQC and on all types of road – motorway, country road or in urban areas – the system is not only able to automatically maintain the correct distance from the vehicle ahead, but also to give the driver noticeable steering assistance, even on bends. At speeds up to 130 km/h the system is not necessarily dependent on clearly visible lane markings, as it can also steer actively, as if in a swarm, if the lines on the road are unclear, as is often the case at road works, or even if there are no lines on the road at all. The system therefore makes driving much easier, especially in bumper-to-bumper driving or tailbacks.

Active Brake Assist in the Driving Assistance package has now been supplemented with a turn-off function: If there is a risk of collision with an oncoming vehicle when turning off, the EQC can be braked within the speed range that is typical of such driving manoeuvres. Braking intervention takes place if the driver signals the intention to turn off (indicators) and the vehicle can be braked to a stop before crossing the detected lane marking. Oncoming vehicles are recognised by the long-range radar sensor at the front and the stereo multipurpose camera.

Even in the base model, Active Brake Assist has extensive safety functions:

  • a distance warning from a warning lamp in the instrument cluster, if the distance from a vehicle in front is insufficient
  • an additional acoustic warning if the danger of collision is identified
  • braking assistance appropriate to the given situation as soon as the driver applies the brakes
  • autonomous emergency braking for moving, stationary or crossing vehicles ahead if the driver fails to respond
  • autonomous emergency braking also for stationary or crossing pedestrians/cyclists.

With the Driving Assistance package, the EQC has further driving assistance systems with functions familiar from the S-Class for route-based driver support. These include further functions of Active Brake Assist, e.g. when there is a risk of collision with crossing traffic or the end of a tailback, as well as Evasive Steering Assist and PRE-SAFE® PLUS if a collision threatens from the rear. The EQC also offers the exit warning function of Blind Spot Assist if a car or cycle is detected approaching from the rear after the EQC has stopped.

PRE-SAFE®: preventive occupant protection

Mercedes-Benz is the pioneer in reversible, preventive occupant protection. These are measures that can help mitigate the consequences of accidents. With the help of various sensors and information from ESP® or the assistance systems, the PRE-SAFE® system is able to recognise critical driving situations in advance and initiate preventive occupant protection measures if an accident threatens. These include e.g. reversible belt tensioning, automatic closing of open side windows and the sliding sunroof, and movement of the front passenger seat backrest to a more favourable crash position.

PRE-SAFE® PLUS can recognise an imminent rear-end collision and warn following traffic by flashing the rear hazard warning lights at a high frequency. If the danger of a collision persists, the system can also firmly apply the brakes of the stationary vehicle, reducing the risk of whiplash injuries by reducing the forward jolt caused by an impact from the rear. This can also reduce the danger of secondary collisions, e.g. with pedestrians or vehicles ahead at road junctions. Immediately before impact, the PRE-SAFE® anticipatory occupant protection measures are deployed.