What's the Best Car for Cyclists? A 2014 Cyclist Detection Volvo (w/ video)

Volvo Cycle Safety

You see headlines like this all the time. “Who Builds the Best Car for Dog-lovers?” “Who Builds the Most Kid-friendly Cars?” Etc. When it comes to a carmaker specifically catering to the needs of bikers and their bikes, however, Volvo seems to be the only carmaker that understands cyclists’ primary need: to avoid getting run over by a pack of 5000 lb. SUVs.

To that end, Volvo used its Geneva Auto Show stage to introduced a revolutionary new safety system called Cyclist Detection, which uses a combination of cameras, infrared radar, and advanced, fuzzy-logic software to identify moving objects “about the size and shape of a bicyclist” in urban bike lanes, and track their movements. The system alerts the driver with lights and sounds if it spots a biker tracking out of the bike lane and into traffic, and will even hit the brakes automatically if it detects a significant speed difference between the vehicle and the cyclist. Combined with the company’s Blind-Spot Detection System (BLIS), a Volvo driver would have to be actively trying to kill you (or really into that text message) to end up on top of you.

You can get a better sense of the Cyclist Detection system, below …

… and, if you’re a long-time Gas 2 reader (Hi, Dad!) you already know I have a special soft-spot for 2-wheeled vehicles and literally anything that helps make the switch from 4 polluting wheels to 2 clean (or, at least, clean-er) wheels an easier sell. Volvo’s new Cyclist Detection with Full Auto-brake does just that, helping to keep cyclists safe while giving Volvo a bit of positive news to crow about, so good on them.

Translation: anything that keeps me “not dead” is cool.

Expect to find Cyclist Detection system on MY2014 Volvos later this summer, as part of the company’s $2775 Technology safety package, which includes similar “auto-brake” systems and a “speeding nanny” that monitors road signs and tells drivers when they’re speeding.

Yes. You can turn off the “I’m speeding” beeps. That was, literally, the first thing I asked.


Source: Volvo.


Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, out on two wheels, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.