SEMA eNews Vol. 17, No. 22, May 29, 2014

Technical Report Documents Effectiveness of ESC Systems

By SEMA Washington, D.C., Staff

vdp
The Vehicle Dynamics Program (VDP) assists SEMA-member companies in understanding how aftermarket vehicle modifications may interact with ESC systems and offers a testing program to evaluate specific products.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has published a technical report that evaluates the effectiveness of electronic stability control (ESC) systems in reducing crash-related fatalities involving light-duty vehicles weighing less than 10,000 lbs. The report updates statistics previously analyzed in 2004, 2007 and 2011.

According to the NHTSA, ESC systems have helped reduce fatal rollovers by 60% in cars and 74% in light trucks, and fatal single-vehicle crashes by 31% in cars and 45% in light trucks. For more information, contact Stuart Gosswein at stuartg@sema.org.

ESC systems assist the driver by triggering computer-controlled braking of individual wheels when it is senses that there is a loss of vehicle control. In 2007, the NHTSA issued Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 126 to mandate installation of ESC systems on all new light-duty vehicles by 2011. SEMA secured a one-year aftermarket exemption, until 2012, whereby it was illegal to take a vehicle out-of-compliance with FMVSS No. 126 when the vehicle was modified. SEMA and its Light Truck Accessory Alliance (LTAA) and Wheel and Tire Council (WTC) have joined with technology partners Mechanical Simulation, dSPACE, ACEC, Link Engineering and Clemson University to create the Vehicle Dynamics Program (VDP).

The VDP assists SEMA-member companies in understanding how aftermarket vehicle modifications (suspension, brakes, wheels, tires, steering, etc.) may interact with ESC systems and offers a testing program to evaluate specific products. Efforts range from physical testing to Hardware-In-the-Loop (HIL) simulation and virtual vehicle dynamics analysis and simulation. The program provides a combination of approaches customized to meet individual company goals.

Learn more and take advantage of this program. For details, contact John Waraniak at johnw@sema.org.

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