By on March 31, 2015


When Toyota and Lexus reveal their respective crossovers at the 2015 New York Auto Show, both will come with low-cost automated braking safety packages.

The all-new RAV4 Hybrid and fourth-gen RX will offer “new, multi-feature, integrated safety packages, each anchored by automated pre-collision braking and offered at a price dramatically below comparable systems across the auto industry.” According to Toyota North America CEO Jim Lentz, the packages will then spread throughout both brands’ collections, with nearly every model to have the packages by 2017.

The packages — Toyota Safety Sense and Lexus Safety System+ — offer pre-collision, pedestrian pre-collision, lane departure, automatic high beam, and dynamic radar cruise control technologies, which are handled via millimeter-wave radar and cameras. The pre-collision systems help bring a vehicle down by 19 to 25 mph within an operational speed range of 7 to 50 mph, while the dynamic radar cruise control keeps an eye on the speed of surrounding vehicles, then adjusts its vehicle’s speed accordingly.

On the Toyota side, TSS will be offered in two packages: TSS C for compacts, and TSS P for midsize and premium models. Pricing for the duo begins at $300 and $500, respectively. Lexus’ LSS+ will be a single package for all models, with pricing to range between $500 and $635.

TSS C/P will first debut on the aforementioned RAV4 Hybrid, as well as the Avalon, with three more expected later this year; LSS+ will debut with the RX and four other models over the same period.

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17 Comments on “Toyota, Lexus Bring Low-Cost Automated Braking To Respective Ranges...”

  • avatar
    Athos Nobile

    Cameron, you may have to check paragraph #3. It reads to me like the system accelerates the car instead of stopping it.

  • avatar

    While I’m not willing to let a car drive for me, an automated “bumper to bumper” mode that automatically drives/brakes in traffic under 10 mph is something I’m all for.

  • avatar

    So what happens when you need to quickly steer around an imminent collision? I can’t imagine a good outcome trying to do that with the brakes engaged.

    • 0 avatar

      The brakes are engaged, not locked. All the cars with this feature have skid control by default. You turn wheel, it won’t slide.

      • 0 avatar

        It won’t slide, but it’s not going to turn very well. It’s going to involve a lot of understeer.

        I remember Car and Driver testing some car with automatic braking that kept jamming the brakes on while they were trying to do the slalom. No thanks, I’d rather just watch what’s happening in front of me.

        • 0 avatar

          Well, I remember when C&D tested cars with under 150 hp and thought they were fast.

          So, I would test the individual cars before being so pessimistic.

          Realistically, not going to need to turn very likely.

  • avatar

    My Genesis has all of these features and more. Some features take a bit of getting used to, but I would miss them after using them for 9 months.

    The auto high beams are about 99% effective in clear weather. Once in a while, on sweeping curves, they are late to react. In any rain or fog, the car is a bit slow to react to oncoming lights. The car is very polite in lowering the beams when there are tail lights ahead. Some effects are a bit comical … the car thinks double red traffic lights at a distance are tail lights and lowers the beams way early.

    Recently, I crept along in 4 miles of stop and go traffic (accident ahead) and never touched a pedal. On brief stops, I did nothing. If the stop was more than a few seconds, I just had to touch “Resume” on the steering wheel. The starts and stops were a lot smoother than I could do myself.

    The lane following showed me just how much line cutting I was doing, mostly drifting over the shoulder line on curves.

  • avatar

    Can this be retro fitted to my ’07 RX350?

    I know, I know. Never in a month of Sundays.

  • avatar

    I’m trying to imagine another interior alarm going off every time the car thinks I should be braking. It look as if the alarm sounds whether I were to react or not.

    • 0 avatar

      The brake alarm seemed well calibrated for the Prius v that my wife had. I recall it triggering 2x over the 30k we had the car.

      The big thing is the cost reduction. The Pre Collision System on our Prius couldn’t bring the vehicle to a full stop. It was basically radar cruise control that ran all the time and alarmed when you were approaching too quickly while pretensioning the seat belts and moving the headrests forward. It was also part of an expensive package that included the dual pane moonroof, high dollar nav/radio system, etc. This is way cheaper and much more functional.

    • 0 avatar

      I have had the alarm sound 3 times in 10,000 miles and each time, the system saved me from hitting something. The first time was coming home from the dealer when a truck ahead of me locked up on an on-ramp with smoke spewing from all wheels. Looked like he may have shifted into reverse. My brakes were on hard before I could react.

      The other 2 times were in work traffic before I was totally used to the brakes on the new car vs my old Genesis. 2015 takes more foot pressure.

      The alarm I get most is when I am sitting with a left turn signal at a red light and a car passes me fast on the left on a turnaround lane. I have learned to keep my turn signal off until the light turns green and that solves the problem.

  • avatar
    Mr. Orange

    If my present car had this I would have cheaper insurance.

  • avatar

    I’m wondering if these systems adjust for poor traction conditions. Except for the poor guy who gets rear ended, part of me hopes that a few idiots out there get so reliant on this automation that the system fails and they cause a wreck… except for the poor innocent guy whose car gets rear ended.

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