Adaptive cruise control System
An automotive cruise control system that automatically slows down the car if it is moving too close to the vehicle in front of it. A radar or laser unit located behind the grille determines the speed and distance of the vehicle in front. When the distance is computed to be safe again, the system accelerates the car back to its last speed setting. Also called "active cruise control" and "intelligent cruise control.

Autonomous cruise control is an optional cruise control system appearing on some more upscale vehicles. The system goes under many different trade names according to the manufacture. These systems use either a radar or laser setup allowing the vehicle to slow when approaching another vehicle and accelerate again to the preset speed when traffic allows. ACC technology is widely regarded as a key component of any future generations of smart cars.


Laser-based systems are significantly lower in cost than radar-based systems; however, laser-based ACC systems do not detect and track vehicles well in adverse weather conditions nor do they track extremely dirty (non-reflective) vehicles very well. Laser-based sensors must be exposed, the sensor (a fairly-large black box) is typically found in the lower grille offset to one side of the vehicle.

Radar-based sensors can be hidden behind plastic fascias; however, the fascias may look different from a vehicle without the feature. For example, Mercedes packages the radar behind the upper grille in the center; however, the Mercedes grille on such applications contains a solid plastic panel in front of the radar with painted slats to simulate the slats on the rest of the grille.

Radar-based systems are available on many luxury cars as an option for approx. 1000-3000 USD/euro. Laser-based systems are available on some near luxury and luxury cars as an option for approx. 400-600 USD/euro.

Cooperating systems

Radar-based ACC often feature a Precrash system, which warns the driver and/or provides brake support if there is a high risk of a collision. Also in certain cars it is incorporated with a lane maintaining system which provides power steering assist to reduce steering input burden in corners when the cruise control system is activated.

Examples of vehicles with adaptive cruise control
  • 2005 Acura RL
  • Audi A4 (see a demonstration on YouTube), A5, A6, A8, Q7
  • BMW 7 Series, 5 series, 6 series, 3 series (Active Cruise Control)
  • 2004 Cadillac DTS, STS, XLR
  • 2007 Chrysler 300C
  • 2006 Ford Mondeo, Taurus, S-Max, Galaxy
  • 2003 Honda Inspire Accord, Legend
  • Hyundai Genesis (Smart Cruise Control, delayed)
  • Infiniti M, Q45,QX56, G35, FX35/45/50 and G37
  • 1999 Jaguar XK-R, S-Type, XJ, XF
  • 2000 Lexus LS430/460 (laser and radar), RX (laser and radar), GS, IS, ES 350, and LX 570
  • Lincoln MKS, MKT
  • 1998 Nissan Cima, Nissan Primera T-Spec Models (Intelligent Cruise Control)
  • 1998 Mercedes-Benz S-Class, E-Class, CLS-Class, SL-Class, CL-Class, M-Class, GL-Class, CLK-Class (Distronic, removed in 2009 from certain US models)
  • Range Rover Sport
  • Renault Vel Satis
  • Subaru Legacy & Outback Japan-spec called SI-Cruise
  • 1997 Toyota Celsior, Sienna (XLE Limited Edition), Avalon, Sequoia (Platinum Edition), Prius, Avensis
  • Volkswagen Passat, Phaeton, Touareg, 2009 Golf
  • Volvo S80, V70, XC70, XC60