Recent technological advancements have considerably broadened the automotive safety landscape. Features like Lane Departure Warning Blind Spot Monitoring Attention Assist Autonomous Braking and Emergency Call are increasingly offered as options by car makers on their newest models.

Many of the technologies are so new that no accepted standards exist to assess them. Euro NCAP the European New Car Assessment Program run by a number of governments and motoring clubs in the EU has developed a unique methodology which allows the potential safety benefits of any new technology to be determined.

A first set of the Advanced Awards was handed out at the Paris motor show on 1st of October by Euro NCAP.

Following the most recent awards of five stars for the BMW 5 Series sedan and the BMW X1 in crash tests the BMW Group has now been distinguished by Euro NCAP with a special award for the BMW Assist Advanced eCall the advanced emergency call system with automatic localisation and accident severity detection.

With its Euro NCAP Advanced Award the institution is expanding its assessment procedure to include safety technologies that have yet to be taken up in the crash tests. As explained by Euro NCAP’s Secretary General Dr. Michiel van Ratingen the key objective of the award is to educate consumers on the advantages of innovative safety systems in cars. In this respect the focus of interest is placed on innovations that contribute directly to reducing the number of deaths on the road. The BMW Assist Advanced eCall is a unique system on the European car market for the early alert and comprehensive information of emergency services in the event of a collision. It forms part of the mobility services provided by BMW ConnectedDrive available in the BMW Assist package for all current BMW models.

Launched in 1997 in the USA and two years later in Europe this technology automatically contacts a BMW call centre directly after an accident creating the optimal conditions for the fast and targeted deployment of emergency services. The BMW call centre then reroutes the emergency call directly to the emergency services closest to the accident site. Since 2008 Assist Advanced eCall now available in Germany Austria Italy and France also allows the transmission of additional data. The emergency services of many European countries can now receive these data that in addition to the precise position and details of the vehicle model and colour also contain information on the occupants the number of activated airbags the intensity of the collision and the predicted severity of injuries.

The data on crash type and severity are analysed by an algorithm developed by BMW scientists for calculating the risk of injuries to the occupants. On the strength of this information the emergency services can prepare in good time and provide adequate medical care to the accident victims. In addition the system also allows the driver of a BMW to initiate the emergency call manually for instance to alert emergency services to other road users. In this manner Assist Advanced eCall is an effective contribution to saving the lives of accident victims.





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Original Publication Date: Mon 25 Oct 2010