Better traffic safety and enhanced working environment for drivers are the goals as Volvo Trucks introduces its new driver support systems based on Volvo Dynamic Steering – an award-winning innovation that assists steering of heavy trucks in a groundbreaking way.
“Volvo Dynamic Steering has truly revolutionised the driver’s job behind the wheel, says Carl Johan Almqvist, traffic and product safety director at Volvo Trucks. “Better directional stability, easier manoeuvring and higher comfort have reduced the risk of road accidents and strain-related injuries. Now we are building further on our success with new functions that help make the traffic environment even safer. This is all in accordance with our vision that no accidents involving Volvo trucks should ever occur. These functions were developed to help drivers avoid some of the most common accident scenarios identified via our accident research programme.”
By integrating Volvo Dynamic Steering with other comfort- and safety-enhancing systems, Volvo Trucks has developed two accident prevention driver support systems: Volvo Dynamic Steering with Stability Assist and Volvo Dynamic Steering with Lane Keeping Assist.
“Imagine you’re driving on a wet, slippery road and you suddenly notice that the rear of the truck is starting to lose its grip on the asphalt. Before this develops into a skid, you steer gently in the opposite direction until the danger is over. That’s exactly the way Volvo Dynamic Steering with Stability Assist works. The big difference is that the system can discover the risk and help stabilise the vehicle before you’ve even noticed that something is about to happen,” says Almqvist.
The next safety innovation, Volvo Dynamic Steering with Lane Keeping Assist, gives the driver a helping hand when the system detects that the truck is showing signs of edging towards the lane marking. With a slight turn of the steering wheel in the appropriate direction and gentle vibration in the steering wheel, the driver is notified and is helped to steer the vehicle back into the lane.
In addition to the two new driver support systems, Volvo Trucks is introducing a longed-for function that makes it possible to adjust steering wheel resistance individually in trucks equipped with Volvo Dynamic Steering.
“Each driver has a different perception of how light or heavy the steering system should be. Now every driver can adjust the steering wheel resistance exactly as he or she wants for comfortable, relaxed and safe driving. This is a very practical feature, not least for trucks that often have different drivers,” says Almqvist.
Mitch Peden – vice-president Volvo Trucks Australia, says the Dynamic Steering system has been tried and tested in the harshest of conditions that Australia can put a truck through, and has proven its reliability and performance in improving stability in any driving situation.
“We open the order book for trucks with new Volvo Dynamic Steering later this month, and expect the first to roll out of our Wacol factory and onto Australian roads by mid-November 2018.”