Nissan just announced that seven of its more popular models will feature automatic emergency braking (AEB) as standard equipment for the 2018 model year. Sometimes called forward emergency braking, AEB uses radar to keep track of the distance of the vehicle ahead. When it senses that gap rapidly closing, it sounds an audio alert, as well as visual warning, signaling the driver to a possible collision. If the driver fails to respond to the warnings, AEB automatically applies the brakes, slowing down the vehicle to help make a crash less severe or, at certain speeds, avoid a crash entirely.
In a 2013 study, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NSTA) found nearly one-third of all police-reported crashes involved one vehicle rear ending another. An updated 2015 NHTSA report also found that such forward emergency braking systems can reduce insurance claims by about 35 percent.
Automatic emergency braking is just one of a suite of safety and driver assist features Nissan offers, including around view monitor, distance control, blind spot intervention, lane keep assist and driver alertness monitor.
Although AEB won’t be included on Nissan’s NISMO versions or any vehicle with manual transmission, Nissan projects this decision will affect about one million 2018 vehicles. Models on which AEB will be standard: 2018 Rogue and Rogue Sport, Altima, Murano, Leaf, Pathfinder, Maxima and Sentra, as well as select Armada models.