Driving at night is not the most relaxing thing to do, especially if you're on a side road full of potholes and without markings. But even in the city, you have to be constantly on the lookout for dangers, including pedestrians. So, when Mercedes says that its new Active Night View Assist Plus [ANVAP] system can also direct light towards people on or near the road, we more than welcome the new safety feature.
As with the previous generation, ANVAP uses, among other technologies, infrared headlamps and a night vision camera. The captured image is displayed on the instrument cluster and the object is highlighted. For added safety, the headlamps have a spotlight function that directs light towards pedestrians.
This way, people can become aware that a car is approaching them. To avoid blinding oncoming traffic, the system doesn’t use the spotlight feature if other cars traveling in front or coming from the opposite direction are near the pedestrian.
“The aim of this development was to prevent the particularly serious consequences of collisions with pedestrians at night," explains Dr. Thomas Weber, member of the Board of Management responsible for Group Research and Head of Development at Mercedes-Benz Cars. "With this concept, a Mercedes-Benz fitted with the spotlight function not only protects its occupants, but also makes a significant contribution towards enhancing safety for other road users."
All Mercedes-Benz cars ordered with Active Night View Assist Plus starting from summer 2011 will come with the spotlight feature fitted as standard.
By Csaba Daradics