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Adaptive Cruise Control Braking

Discussion in 'Stock 2011 - 2019 Ford Explorer Discussion' started by Holligl, July 17, 2011.

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    1. Holligl

      Holligl Active Member

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      When using the adaptive cruise control, and a vehicle slows in front, it will slow down pretty aggressively. Do the brake lights actually go on? My wife asked and I had to say I don't know. Does it actually use the engine/transmission or will it use the brakes?
       
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    3. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      This was discussed a while back in a thread Adaptive Cruise Control Question, posted 05-06-11. You can go back and look through it if you wish. To answer your question, Yes, the brake is used and the brake lights do come on.

      Peter
       
    4. drober30

      drober30 Active Member

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      I was wondering if the brakes would wear out prematurely by using the adaptive cruise control?

      Sometimes, I can feel the Explorer keeping it's distance in heavier traffic for a few miles so are the brakes taking a beating?
       
    5. Vic

      Vic Active Member

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      The system will first release the throttle to maintain the distance and the brakes applied only if it's required to maintain the preferred distance set by the driver.
       
    6. Holligl

      Holligl Active Member

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      Mine is smooth and only brakes when it really needs to. I think it even senses that if someone cuts in front of you, as long as they are going faster, it will not immediately increase the gap. This is one of my favorite features besides the backup camera.
       
    7. sgparnes

      sgparnes Active Member

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      I tried mine the other day and noticed that the system will keep the set distance when the car ahead slows down. I looked down and I was going 60 down from 75 and I assumed the car ahead slowed down. Of course I pulled around and passed him!
       
    8. FordService

      FordService Official Ford Rep

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      I’m glad your question was answered Holligl! Just to confirm what peterk9 already said, the Adaptive Cruise Control will activate the brake light when the brake is used. The Adaptive Cruise Control will not activate the brake light, however, when using the friction from the engine to slow the car.

      Cory
       
    9. drober30

      drober30 Active Member

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      What happens to the brake pads/rotors when it maintains the distance for an extended period of time?

      This would be like riding the brakes?
       
    10. calb

      calb Active Member

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      From what Cory said, it sounds like it is no difference than what you'd do now yourself .... use both engine braking and brake pedal to maintain distance.
       
    11. FordService

      FordService Official Ford Rep

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      I checked on this drober30 and found that calb is correct and that the ACC does not ride the brakes to hold speed. Brakes are applied as necessary to slow the vehicle, in addition to engine braking, but the speed is held using throttle position. It is no different than if someone is driving on a crowded highway.

      Cory
       
      Last edited: July 19, 2011
    12. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      Although I did say that the brake lights come on but I'm now reconsidering that answer. When driving at night and applying the brakes manually, I can see a red glow on the rear window and on the wiper motor cover caused by the 3rd (high) brake light.
      Last night I decided to test this out with the Adaptive Cruise Control on. I came up behind a vehicle that slowed to make a right hand turn. My Ex began to slow down quickly and I could feel that the brakes were being applied but there was NO reflection from the 3rd brake light. Eventually the Collision Warning system activated. I can only conclude from this, that, since I believe all 3 brake lights work simultaneously, the ACC did NOT activate the brake lights.
       
    13. harlenm

      harlenm Active Member

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      I can see the reflection of the brake lights in the back of the glass when ACC applies the brakes.
       
    14. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      I guess more testing is required. The area in which I did the test did not have street lights or any other lighting. There definitely was no brake light reflection. Just in case anyone is wondering, yes, the light does work since it did cause a reflection when manually braking at the next intersection.:scratch:
       
    15. FordService

      FordService Official Ford Rep

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      peterk9 & harlenm,

      The ACC system does not activate the brake lights. The brake lights are activated by depressing the brake pedal. The vehicle is slowed through a combination of engine braking, and the slight drag on the brake rotors caused by pre-charging the brakes.

      Cory
       
    16. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      Cory, does this not seem to contradict your post of 07-18 in this thread? There you stated the ACC activates the brake lights when it uses the brakes to slow the vehicle.
      In my test, the ACC definitely seemed to apply the brakes and the collision warning came on but no reflection of brake light in the rear window. I'd estimate the speed was about 40mph on the downside of a highway overpass when the vehicle ahead signaled for a right hand turn. I just stood by to see what the Explorer's systems would do. After the collision warning system came on, I changed into the left lane to avoid having to hit the brakes. I had made sure that there was no oncoming traffic prior to this test.

      Peter
       
    17. harlenm

      harlenm Active Member

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      Just confirmed brake light is activated by acc
       
    18. FordService

      FordService Official Ford Rep

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      Peter,

      I’m checking in here to say I’m looking into clarifying this. I’ll be sure to post the answer here. :)

      Cory
       
    19. harlenm

      harlenm Active Member

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      Cory, experimented with it last night. It looks like if the car is doing small adjustments to maintain distance, it doesn't activate the light. But when it brakes harder than that, it does activate the light.
       
    20. FordService

      FordService Official Ford Rep

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      That’s helpful, harlenm; thanks! I’m still waiting on a reply, so I’ll post when I hear back. :)

      Cory
       
    21. Spengracin

      Spengracin Active Member

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      My favorite feature, ACC does not activate the brake light under normal conditions that use the combo of throttle/and precharge of brakes. When collision warning, which brings the system out of the precharge mode, yes the brake light will come on for safety for the vehicle following you. The collision warning is way too cool. Passengers are amazed by how it works.
       

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