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What is ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance System) in Cars?

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 07/12/2023

Imagine cruising on a busy highway, and suddenly, a car in front of you brakes hard. You react quickly, but not quickly enough to avoid a collision. You wish you had some extra help to prevent such accidents.

Well, you are not alone. Many drivers face similar situations every day, and that is why car manufacturers are developing and implementing ADAS autonomous driving in their vehicles.

ADAS in cars is not a new concept. Advanced Driver Assistance Systems have been around for decades, but they have become more sophisticated and widespread in recent years, thanks to technological advances and the demand for safer and smarter cars.

In this blog, we will look at the ADAS system in cars, including ADAS meaning, ADAS functions, its types and so on.

What is the ADAS Feature in Cars?

The ADAS meaning is Advanced Driver Assistance System. It is the term that refers to a vehicle's electronic systems that use advanced technologies to help the driver. ADAS function in a car is to assist the driver in various ways, such as:

  • Warning the driver of potential hazards or risks on the road, such as other vehicles, pedestrians, or traffic signs.

  • Controlling the vehicle's functions, such as speed, steering, or braking, to avoid or reduce the impact of accidents.

  • Adjusting the seat, lighting, or temperature enhances the driver's comfort and convenience.

ADAS autonomous driving features differ from passive safety features, such as airbags, seat belts, or crumple zones. Passive features save the driver and passengers in case of a crash. ADAS is an active safety feature. That means it can prevent or mitigate crashes before they happen.

Types of ADAS Technology in Cars

There are different **Levels of automation in ADAS. According to the SAE or Society of Automotive Engineers, it ranges from **Level 0-5. These **Levels rely on the control and responsibility the driver and the system have over the vehicle. Here is a brief overview of these **Levels:

Level 0- No automation: The driver is entirely in charge of the vehicle, and the system only provides some information or warnings, such as a parking sensor or a rearview camera.

Level 1- Driver assistance: The driver is still in charge of the vehicle, but the system can control one function, such as speed or steering, under certain conditions, such as adaptive cruise control or lane-keeping assist.

Level 2- Partial automation: The driver is still in charge of the vehicle, but the system can control two functions, speed, and steering, under certain conditions, such as traffic jam assistance or highway pilot. The driver must always monitor the system and environment and intervene if needed.

Level 3- Conditional automation: The system can control the vehicle under specific scenarios, such as on a highway or in a parking lot. The driver can relax and divert their attention from the road but must be ready to resume control when the system requests or when the situation changes.

Level 4- High automation: The system can handle most driving situations, even in complex environments like a city or poor weather. The driver can take over the control but is not required. The system can operate without the driver’s presence, such as in a self-driving taxi or a delivery vehicle.

Level 5- Full automation. The system can perform all driving tasks in all conditions without any human input. The driver is not needed, and the vehicle has no pedals, steering wheel, or dashboard. The system can handle any situation, even in unforeseen or emergency scenarios.

Currently, most cars in the market are equipped with **Level 1 or **Level 2 ADAS, which means that they can assist the driver with some functions but cannot take over control of the vehicle.

ADAS Safety Features

Let's describe some standard ADAS features in cars, how they work, and their advantages and limitations.

Adaptive Cruise Control

It automatically adjusts your car's speed and distance according to the traffic conditions. The system uses a radar or a camera to detect the vehicle in front and maintains a safe and constant gap between the two cars.

You can set the desired distance and speed, and the system will accelerate or decelerate accordingly. You can also override the system by pressing the brake or the accelerator pedal. This feature can improve the safety and comfort of the driver, especially on long trips or in congested traffic. However, it may not work well in bad weather or situations where the vehicle in front changes lanes or brakes suddenly.

Lane Departure Warning/Correction

This ADAS system in cars alerts you or steers the vehicle back to the lane if it drifts out of the lane markings. The system employs a camera to detect the lane markings and warns you with a sound, a vibration, or a visual signal if the vehicle crosses the lane without signalling.

If you do not respond to the warning, the system can also correct the vehicle's steering to keep it within the lane. This feature can prevent or reduce the risk of lane departure accidents, often caused by driver fatigue, distraction, or impairment. Yet, it may not work well in poor visibility or where the lane markings are faded, missing, or ambiguous.

Traffic Sign Recognition

It spots and shows the speed limit and other traffic signals on the dashboard or windshield. The camera recognises the traffic signs and compares them with the map data and the GPS location. It also alerts you if you exceed the speed limit or miss a sign. This feature can help you comply with the traffic rules and know road conditions. However, its functioning may fail where the traffic signs are obscured, damaged, or outdated.

Automatic Emergency Braking

It applies the brakes when a collision is imminent or reduces the impact of the collision. It uses radar, a camera, or lidar to detect the vehicle's distance, speed, and obstacle, such as another vehicle, a pedestrian, or an animal. The system calculates the risk of a collision and warns the driver with a sound, a vibration, or a visual signal. The system can automatically apply the brakes if the driver doesn't respond quickly or if a crash is inevitable.

Blind Spot Detection

This feature uses a radar, a camera, or an ultrasound to monitor the areas that are not visible to you, such as the sides or the rear of the vehicle. It then sends alerts with a sound, a light, or a vibration if another car or object is in the blind spot, especially when the driver signals to change lanes or turn.

Understanding ADAS Function on Indian Roads

Indian roads are known for their chaotic and unpredictable traffic conditions. Here are some points to consider:

  • ADAS depends on the quality of road infrastructure, such as lane markings, speed breakers, traffic signs, and signals. Many Indian roads lack these features or are poorly maintained, making it difficult for ADAS to function correctly. For example, it may fail to brake in time if an unmarked speed breaker is ahead.

  • ADAS also relies on the behaviour of other road users, such as pedestrians, cyclists, animals, and vehicles. Indian roads are often crowded with various road users who may not follow the traffic rules or lane discipline. For example, it may not avoid a collision if a pedestrian suddenly crosses the road or a vehicle overtakes from the wrong side.

  • ADAS requires regular calibration and maintenance, which may not be easily available or affordable in India. ADAS sensors and cameras may get damaged or misaligned due to potholes, bumps, or accidents, affecting their performance and accuracy. It may also need software updates to cope with India's changing road conditions and traffic patterns.


ADAS can also be seen as a step towards autonomous driving, which is the ultimate goal of many car manufacturers and technology companies. Autonomous driving means the ability of a vehicle to drive itself without any human intervention, using sensors, cameras, software, and artificial intelligence.

However, ADAS is not the same as autonomous driving, as it still requires the driver to be alert and ready to take over the control of the vehicle at any time. ADAS is meant to assist the driver, not replace the driver.

Even if your car has this feature, you must buy car insurance. Insurance for four-wheelers alleviates your financial burden in case your insured vehicle breaks down due to a collision, fire, or is hit by a natural calamity.

To find the best car insurance policy, it is advisable to use a car insurance calculator.


What is the ADAS technology in cars?

ADAS refers to technologies in vehicles designed to enhance safety and improve driving. Its examples include adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, and automatic emergency braking. ADAS uses sensors and cameras to assist drivers.

What does the ADAS feature in cars do?

ADAS can warn about lane changes, keep a good speed, and even brake if there is danger.

What are the disadvantages of ADAS?

The first downside of the ADAS system in cars is that adverse weather conditions can hamper sensor performance. Their repairs are often expensive, especially if the system gets damaged. Also, for the smooth functioning of ADAS, regular calibration is necessary, adding to maintenance costs.

Can I install the ADAS autonomous driving feature in my car?

Yes, you can install the ADAS feature in your car in India, but it depends on the system's availability, compatibility, and cost. Some companies offer aftermarket ADAS solutions for various car models in India. However, you may need to check with your car manufacturer if your car is suitable for ADAS installation.

Does ADAS save fuel?

Yes, the ADAS technology in cars can save fuel by maintaining optimal speeds, avoiding unnecessary braking and accelerating, and reducing drag and emissions.

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