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Vehicles Safer with ESP. 15/3/04
New research carried out by the University of Iowa has foiund that vehicles equipped with Electronic Stability Programs (ESP) resulted in 34% more drivers retaining control of their vehicles in would-be crash scenarios when compared with non-ESP equipped vehicles. Only about one in ten new vehicles sold last year, were fitted with the technology.

Using an advanced driving simulator owned by the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), researchers used simulations of oncoming vehicles, wind gust and curve departure to test the effectiveness of the technology. The results show that vehicles equipped with ESP systems provide a significant safety benefit by helping drivers maintain control of their vehicle. The results found ESP can reduce the risk of losing control by as much as 88 percent, which equates to an increase of 34 percent in the number of drivers who maintained control of their vehicles with the ESP system activated.

The system detects when a driver are about to lose control of his vehicle and automatically intervenes to provide stability. Sensors detect when the vehicle path differs from that which is intended. ESP compares steering and brake inputs versus actual wheel speed, yaw rate and lateral acceleration. Sensors apply independent wheel braking and engine torque reduction.

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