A university study found that drivers are more likely to regain control of a vehicle if it is equipped with stability control technology.
According to the study by the University of Iowa, drivers faced with a loss-of-vehicle control situation are about one-third more likely to maintain control if their vehicle is equipped with an electronic stability control system.
The research was conducted on behalf of the Electronic Stability Control Coalition. The group is a joint effort of Robert Bosch Corp. and Continental Teves, who sell such systems, to promote their benefits to drivers.
The Iowa study used a simulator to test driver performance when a vehicle veers out of its lane, is hit by a wind gust or begins to run off the road in a curve. Subjects attempted the three maneuvers with the electronic stability control system on and again with the system switched off.
Research overseas, where such systems are more widely used, suggest electronic stability control may prevent up to 50 percent of single-vehicle crashes. The technology is optional on many vehicles offered in North America, but the coalition says few buyers ask for it-largely because they don’t understand what it does.
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