Runaway Volvo Smashes Pedestrian Groins

Before you click play on the video, be forewarned: the text of the tweet is sarcastic. The car does not sense humans in front of it, it definitively does not stop, and the technology behind the interaction is anything but amazing. A couple of pedestrian groins do get smashed, but it’s not even clear that they belong to Volvo employees. Volvo employees presumably would realize that the car they were “testing” did not come with “pedestrian detection”. Of course!

But even if it did have the feature, [Volvo spokesperson Johan] Larsson says the driver would have interfered with it by the way they were driving and “accelerating heavily towards the people in the video.” “The pedestrian detection would likely have been inactivated due to the driver inactivating it by intentionally and actively accelerating,” said Larsson. “Hence, the auto braking function is overrided by the driver and deactivated.”

Apparently, the unfortunate folks on the grill-side of one of the country’s safest cars were confusing the “City Safety” system for technology that would automatically apply the brakes if humans are detected in the car’s path. That feature, as it turns out, is a $3,000 option and wouldn’t have saved those pedestrian groins even if it were installed on this model, which it was not.

The victims are bruised, but otherwise fine.