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Cooley On Cars
Adaptive Cruise confusionWhat to do if you think your car's cruise control is trying to kill you.
[MUSIC] Hey folks, Brian Cooley with another one of your emails about high tech-cars and modern driving. This one comes in from Jack G in Florida who's, I imagine, white as a sheet as he writes this cuz he thinks his car's adaptive cruise control is trying to kill him. He says, I drive a 2015 Audi S-8. Nice Car. And I love the car in every manner except for the collision mitigation braking system / adaptive cruise control in it, which he says, has no guaranteed reliability. I have been in situation in traffic using the stop and go feature of the adaptive cruise, when a car will change lanes out of my path ahead And suddenly out of nowhere, the adaptive cruise will rocket my car up to top speed, where I had it set, sending me hurtling into the car ahead. Let's dig into what's going on here. These systems are new, they're the early pieces of self driving, and I think we've got a lot of expectations to figure out, and to set here. Audi speaks about this in the official owner's manual and frankly speaks about it in two ways. On page 92 it describes adaptive cruise control as being able to help make driving more comfortable and in stop-and-go traffic. Says right there. But also on that same page, it says that adaptive cruise will not slow the vehicle down or maintain a set distance if you're heading towards an obstacle or something on the road that is not moving, specifically, such as vehicles stopped in a traffic jam. [UNKNOWN] the fastest way to discover those limitations of any adaptive cruise control is first and foremost Getting into stop and go traffic and leaving it at highway speeds that you were in before. I think you have to modulate those settings. You gotta drop that set speed down rationally when you're in stop and go to, I don't know, something in the 20s or 30 mile per hour range, just a ballpark. Now the next thing is you gotta understand We're not in a full self driving era, obviously what you've got is a car that is level 2. Level 2 means you've got a couple systems working together. One to maintain lane let's say and in this case, one to maintain speed and distance. But in all cases, by every definition, level 2 means the driver is on duty, monitoring everything, all the time. Look, Audi is far from the only company grappling with the 3 points. Of describing these systems. One, what do they called them? That offers a certain promise. Two, how do they describe them in the manual? As we can see it, It kinda goes two ways. And three, how does the system express it self in it's operation? What does it tell you by it's operation that you expect. This has been a problem for Tesla. It's been a problem for Mercedes. I think every car maker out there requires that you be safe and conservative in using these new systems, for the time being. Glad you're okay.