For decades, Mercedes-Benz has been setting the standards for the development of new technologies for boosting active and passive safety in automobiles. All of these systems have demonstrably contributed to making road traffic safer and to considerably reducing the numbers of road users injured or killed in accidents.

Mercedes-Benz defines the benchmarks in active safety technology with intelligent assistance systems that turn the vehicle into the driver’s “thinking partner.” These systems, available since 2009 in the CL-, E- and S-Class and starting this year in the new CLS-Class as well, go into operation specifically in the situations that are responsible for the most common types of accident, such as those due to lane changing, overtiredness, or restricted visibility at night.

ESF 2009: The future of automotive safety
The focus during the development of the numerous safety innovations in the Experimental Safety Vehicle (ESF) 2009 was on the critical phase immediately preceding an accident. The systems presented in the ESF 2009 improve the safety potential within the extremely short period of 600 milliseconds between the recognition of an unavoidable accident and the accident itself. In this way, accidents can either be prevented or their consequences can be significantly reduced.

Selected milestones in Mercedes-Benz safety development
1939 – Start of safety development for passenger cars
1959 – Safety body
1969 – Establishment of Mercedes-Benz accident research
1978 – ABS Anti-Lock Brake System
1980 – Airbag, seat belt tensioner
1989 – Automatic rollbar
1995 – Electronic Stability Program (ESP®)
1996 – Brake Assist (BAS)
1998 – DISTRONIC
1999 – Active Body Control (ABC), tire pressure monitoring system
2002 – PRE-SAFE®
2003 – Active light function
2005 – DISTRONIC PLUS, Brake Assist PLUS, Night View Assist
2006 – PRE-SAFE® Brake, Intelligent Light System
2009 – Speed Limit Assist, ATTENTION ASSIST, Lane Keeping Assist, Blind Spot Assist
2010 – LED high-performance headlight, Active Lane Keeping Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist

Source: Daimler AG