Your ACC can't work well in tunnels - and it's not because your car is cheap

Sanjay · Jul 6, 2021 07:00 PM

Your ACC can't work well in tunnels - and it's not because your car is cheap 01

Buyers today are getting lots more car for the Ringgit today compared to say, 10 or so years ago. Even relatively-cheaper Malaysian offerings like the newfangled Perodua Ativa and Proton X50 now come with features that one could only get in high-end cars a few years ago, one of which is adaptive cruise control (ACC).

Your ACC can't work well in tunnels - and it's not because your car is cheap 02

What the Ativa's stereo camera is used for

As you'd have probably known, most cars' advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) relies on either a camera, radar, or a camera plus radar setup. And much like almost any other man-made object, there's limitations to what they can do.

Your ACC can't work well in tunnels - and it's not because your car is cheap 03

Icons that pop up on the instrument cluster when ACC is activated

We'll use the Ativa as an example here by virtue of it being the most accessible car with ACC in the market right now. Taking a peek in its owner's manual, aside from the how-tos, Perodua also lists a few dos and don'ts about the system.

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Your ACC can't work well in tunnels - and it's not because your car is cheap 01

From bright to dark to bright again - the system will need time to adapt

Besides things you should already know - like not using it on roads with heavy pedestrian and bicycle traffic - the manual also warns against using it when entering or exiting tunnels. Curious?

Your ACC can't work well in tunnels - and it's not because your car is cheap 02

The logic lies in the sudden change of brightness. The camera will need some time to adjust to the new lighting conditions, and this affects the accuracy and functionality of the system.

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Much the same goes to other visually-affecting situations as well. In rainy or foggy conditions, don't expect the ACC system to be pin-point sharp too. It's best to drive safely and retain full control of your vehicle in such situations.

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So the next time your ADAS system gives control back to you in these conditions, don't complain about it - it's doing exactly what it's designed to do - keeping you safe.

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This goes back to the point that ADAS systems are not the last word in driver safety. Sure, they're nice to have and great to see in action, but that's what it really is - just a tool to help you. It's up to you to remember that you're in control and drive responsibly.

Also read: Advanced Driver Assistance Systems ADAS, more harm than good?

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Sanjay

Writer

With humble beginnings collecting diecast models and spending hours virtually tuning dream cars on the computer, his love of cars has delightfully transformed into a career. Sanjay enjoys how the same passion for cars transcends boundaries and brings people together.

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2021 Perodua Ativa 1.0L Turbo X

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