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Should your new car have a lane departure warning system?

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The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has estimated that lane departure warning systems could prevent or mitigate up to 7,529 fatal crashes that result from vehicles leaving the roadway. The technology detects when a car is drifting out of lane and alerts the driver.

There are two disctinct technologies being used:

  • Lane Departure Warning alerts drivers when their vehicle is about to unintentionally cross into another lane with a visual and audio or sensory cue.
  • Lane Keep Assist acts to automatically move the vehicle back into the lane.

 

Vehicles with Lane Departure Warning do not necessarily have Lane Keep Assist. However, all cars with Lane Keep Assist are also equipped with Lane Departure Warning. The systems can be a potential life-saver for drowsy or distracted drivers who are not fully engaged in keeping the vehicle on the road.

 

How do lane departure warning systems work?

Lane Departure Warning uses a small camera to detect the distance of road surface markings and then analyzes that information to determine if the vehicle is about to drift across said markings. If the turn signal is not activated when this happens, the driver is alerted by a visual warning and an audible tone or a vibration. 

Lane Keep Assist takes this a step further by actively directing the vehicle back into the center of the lane. The car will either apply the brakes on the opposite front wheel or use steering input to make the correction. A driver who simply forgot to use the turn signal can easily overcome this by actively steering the car in the desired direction.

 

 

What are the limitations of lane departure warning systems?

Because the technology is dependent on visual cues, it works best on well-maintained roads under normal weather conditions. It will have trouble on older roads with dilapidated lane markers or in heavy rain and snow. Additionally, the systems function only above speeds of 30-35 mph.

 

Are lane departure warning systems worth the cost?

Accidents that involve vehicles drifting out of lane may constitute a large percentage of fatal accidents, but they represent only about 3% of all police reported crashes. For those who often commute on highways late at night, or have small children in the vehicle that can provide a distraction at a moment's notice, the technology is potentially life-saving. Others, who drive less frequently under such circumstances, may not see the value of the added expense. 

 

Which vehicles offer lane departure warning systems?

As of the time of writing, lane departure warning and lane keep assist are offered as a standard or optional feature on these vehicles:

 

Audi Active Lane Assist

Audi's Active Lane Assist which includes lane keep assist is offered on the Prestige versions of most models. 

BMW Lane Departure Warning

BMW's Lane Departure Warning is included in the Active Driving Assistant suite which is available on most models.

Buick Lane Departure Warning

Buick’s Lane Departure Warning is available on most models.

Cadillac Lane Departure Warning/Lane Keep Assist

Cadillac's Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keep Assist are included in the Driver Awareness Package which is offered on most models.

Chevrolet Lane Departure Warning

Chevy's Lane Departure Warning is available on most models.

Dodge Lane Departure Warning with Lane Keep Assist

Dodge’s Lane Departure Warning with Lane Keep Assist is offered on the Dodge Charger.

FIAT LaneSense with Lane Keep Assist

FIAT's LaneSense Lane Departure Warning with Lane Keep Assist is offered on the FIAT 500x.

Ford Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keeping Aid

Ford’s Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keeping Aid are available on most models.

GMC Lane Departure Warning

GMC's Lane Departure Warning is included in the Active Driving Assistant suite which is optional on select models.

Honda Sensing Lane Departure Warning

Honda's Sensing Lane Departure Warning is offered on most models.

Hyundai Lane Departure Warning

Hyundai's Lane Departure Warning is an option on most models.

Infiniti Lane Departure Prevention

Infiniti's Lane Departure Prevention includes Lane Keep Assist and is offered on the Q50, Q70, QX50, QX70 and QX80.

Jeep LaneSense Lane Departure Warning with Lane Keep Assist

Jeep’s LaneSense Lane Departure Warning with Lane Keep Assist is optional on select Renegade and Cherokee models.

Kia Lane Departure Warning System

Kia’s Lane Departure Warning System is offered on the K900.

Land Rover Lane Departure Warning

Land Rover’s Lane Departure Warning is an optional upgrade on the Range Rover, Ranger Rover Sport, and Range Rover Evoque.

Lexus Lane Departure Alert

Lexus' Lane Departure Alert is offered on the NX.

Mazda Lane Departure Warning System

Mazda’s Lane Departure Warning System is available on the Grand Touring version of most models.

Mercedes-Benz Active Lane Keeping Assist

Mercedes-Benz' Active Lane Keeping Assist which includes Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keep Assist is offered as an upgrade on most models.

Nissan Lane Departure Warning

Nissan’s adaptive headlights is offered on the Rogue and Altima.

Porsche Lane Departure Warning

Porsche's Lane Departure Warning is offered on the Macan and Panamera.

Subaru Lane Departure Warning

Subaru's Lane Departure Warning is included in the EyeSight suite of active safety features. EyeSight is an option on the Legacy, Outback, Forester, Impreza, XV Crosstrek and WRX.

Volkswagen Lane Departure Warning with Lane Assist

Volkswagen's Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keeping Assist come standard on the CC and Touareg and is available on the Golf, Golf Sportwagen and GTI.

Volvo Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keeping Aid

Volvo's Lane Departure Warning comes standard or is an option on most models; Lane Keeping Aid is available on the XC70, XC90, S60, S80 and V60.

 

Whether or not you want a lane departure warning system in your new vehicle, Cartelligent can help you get a great deal on exactly what you want. Call our team of car-buying experts at 888-427-4270 or get started today.