Ford, Honda Reportedly Ahead of Schedule on Emergency Brakes
Ford and Honda are ahead of some key competitors in a race to meet new emergency braking standards, upgrading vehicles with a safety feature that advocates say will save lives.
The carmakers are on pace to equip vehicles with automatic emergency braking systems in advance of a deadline agreed to by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Ford and Honda have installed the safety feature on 95% of vehicles built for the U.S. since September 2020.
“Insurance data shows that front crash prevention systems with both forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking cut rear-end crashes by half,” The Detroit Free Press’ Phoebe Wall Howard reports.
Ford and Honda are part of a dozen car manufacturers who have now completed the voluntary commitment. The group includes Mercedes-Benz, Toyota, Subaru, Volkswagen, Tesla and Volvo.
Stellantis and General Motors, meanwhile, are well behind the pack. GM has equipped some 58% of vehicles with the emergency braking systems, while about 43% of new Stellantis vehicles come with the feature.
“GM remains on track to meet the industry commitment to automatic emergency braking and has been a volume leader in getting more vehicles equipped with this technology on public roads,” a company spokesman told the Free Press.
Car Defects Still Pose Safety Risks. Know Your Rights
The emergency braking efforts by Ford, Honda and other major carmakers are welcomed news for anyone hitting the road. But auto manufacturers are still having a hard time ensuring that their vehicles are actually safe to drive.
The world’s largest car companies recall millions of vehicles every year for a wide range of defects that put drivers and passengers at risk. They often do not announce those recalls until long after the defective cars have been sold to unsuspecting buyers.
Ford, for example, recently recalled some 185,000 F-150 pickups. The company said malfunctioning insulators could damage the trucks’ driveshafts, causing drivers to lose control.
Fortunately, car owners in California have some valuable rights and protections under the state’s lemon law. The Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act requires car manufacturers to perform a wide range of repairs on vehicles while they are under warranty.
The lemon law also forces manufacturers to buy back cars that the companies are unable or simply refuse to fix. That includes covering the car’s purchase price and reimbursing the owner for financing costs and other expenses.
In some cases, a manufacturer can instead offer to replace the vehicle. It is up to the owner, however, to decide whether to accept or reject this alternative arrangement.
Talk with a California Lemon Law Attorney Today
If you have been stuck with a defective or malfunctioning vehicle, a California lemon law attorney at Bickel Sannipoli APC can help you fight back. We represent people across the state and have a long track record of successful results for our clients.