US Coalition Renews Call For Universal ADAS Technology Terms

A coalition of American organisations is calling on vehicle makers, regulators, safety organisations, journalists, and other stakeholders to adopt standard terms for advanced driver-assistance system (ADAS) features. The group is also asking for consumer education on the benefits, limitations, and capabilities of ADAS.

As part of the call, the ‘Clearing the Confusion’ coalition, consisting of the AAA, Consumer Reports, JD Power, National Safety Council, PAVE (Partners for Automated Education), and SAE International, has released an updated set of recommendations for universal terms for ADAS features. There are six overarching categories – collision warning, collision intervention, driving control assistance, parking assistance, driver monitoring, and other driver assistance systems. Driver monitoring is the newest category, added this year.

“ADAS features have become increasingly prevalent in new vehicles and have the potential to reduce traffic crashes and save thousands of lives each year,” the coalition said. “However, the terminology used by automakers to describe ADAS features varies widely, which can confuse consumers and make it difficult to understand the vehicle’s functions.

“Further, when the capabilities of vehicle safety features are overstated or misrepresented with marketing language designed to reel in buyers, consumers may over-rely on these systems. Establishing common language for ADAS helps ensure drivers are fully aware these systems assist, not replace, an engaged driver.”

‘Clearing the Confusion’ started in 2019 with an initial list of standardised names and was endorsed by the US Department of Transportation in 2020. The coalition said its recommended terms are simple, specific, and based on system functionality. It is updated as more systems are introduced, and the coalition will continue to work with stakeholders and policymakers.

“The terms are not intended to replace an automaker’s proprietary system or package names,” the coalition said. “Instead, they will help consumers access transparent and consistent information on window stickers, owner’s manuals, and other marketing materials for generic system functions.”