BMW and Mercedes Benz are among automakers that are improving and speeding up their use of automatic brakes as part of efforts to reduce front-end crashes, a U.S. safety group said. The systems are a focus of U.S. regulators looking to reduce highway crashes, which claimed 33,561 lives in 2012.
What was once an optional package, for which consumers had to pay extra, is now beginning to become standard, including in some models of Mercedes-Benz, Volvo AB and Honda Motor Co. Acura vehicles, the institute said. Google Inc. is also using the technology as a building block for driverless cars.
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