The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has estimated that stability control could save up to 9600 fatalities and 238,000 injuries annually, at an average cost of only $111 a vehicle in addition to the cost of the anti-lock system, and the federal agency has called stability control the most significant development since the seatbelt.
Commonly referred to as ESC, but also with a number of different trade names, including ASC, VSC, VDIM, Stabilitrak, and Active Handling, electronic stability control works to avoid the loss of control in an emergency maneuver by anticipating a skid with a set of sensors then engaging the brakes at one or more wheels individually and employing the anti-lock system help to restore stability.
So stability control has a long way to go before it’s a permanent part of the fleet. And it’s likely, because of cost, to show up in compact cars last.
But that may be bad news for younger drivers. Recent studies from Germany’s ADAC, an automobile association, have found that most accidents involving drivers aged 18 to 25 involve curvy roads, loss of stability, and the car going off the road. These smallest cars in
In 2006, 43 percent of all newly registered cars in
Bosch said that while stability control is largely standard equipment among mid-size and luxury vehicles in Europe, among small and mini cars, only 13 to 15 percent are fitted with stability control in the continent’s five main markets —
NHTSA: Fatalities, Injuries Down by Bengt Halvorson (7/29/2007)
Pedestrian deaths down as well.