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The government wants you to buy a car with smarter brakes


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Autonomous cars may have been all the rage at this year's Consumer Electronics Show, but most of the tech showcased is still pretty far off. What isn't, however, are smarter stopping systems. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is adding crash imminent braking and dynamic braking support to its list of recommended advanced safety features for new cars. The former uses sensors to activate the brakes if a crash is imminent and the driver already hasn't. Dynamic braking support, on the other hand, increases stopping power if you haven't put enough pressure on the brake pedal. Like lane-departure and front collision warning systems, these features are available on some models already -- this move gives them high-profile attention, though.

And for good reason: As the NHSTA tells it, a third of 2013's police-reported car accidents were the rear-end crashes and a "large number" of the drivers either didn't apply the brakes at all (what?!) or fully before impact. Like The Los Angeles Times and Ars Technica note, this is far from becoming a mandate but that isn't out of the realm of possibilities. For example, backup cameras'll be required equipment on every vehicle come 2018.

[Image credit: spratmackrel/Flickr]

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