Chevy expands technology to monitor teen driving


By Robert Duffer - Chicago Tribune



Teen Driver Technology, with industry-first in-vehicle report card, displays to parents how their teen drove including how far they traveled, top speed reached, and whether available active safety features were activated. (TNS)


Parenting and stress are as inseparable as teens and texting.

Chevy is trying to minimize what one online poll calls a parent’s biggest worry: teens driving.

Chevy will expand its Teen Driver technology to 10 of its 2017 vehicles, including the Bolt EV, Camaro, Colorado midsize pickup, Cruze, Malibu, Silverado and Silverado HD pickups, Suburban, Tahoe and Volt. Teen Driver will cover 64 percent of Chevy sales, according to Automotive News.

Activated by the key fob, the Teen Driver technology can let parents limit the maximum volume on the radio and can give audible and visual warnings when the car is traveling faster than the preapproved speed set by the parent. Safety features such as stability control and lane departure warnings cannot be disabled. If front seat belts aren’t being used, then the audio won’t work. (We wish the car wouldn’t work for all drivers and front-seat passengers without seat belts.)

“Chevrolet developed this system as a tool that can give teens some additional coaching as they’re gaining experience,” Chevy safety engineer MaryAnn Beebe said in a statement. “Driving on your own is a big milestone for teens, and Teen Driver helps to remind them to practice safe driving.”

Teen Driver provides a report card showing how the teen drove for parents to help coach (or punish) the teen on safe driving habits. The report card can show distance traveled, antilock braking events, tailgating alerts, and “wide-open throttle events.”

Tough time to be a teen. All this info would have prohibited most, if not all, of my peers from the family truckster.

Other automakers have teen monitoring systems, including Ford MyKey, Hyundai Blue Link, Kia Uvo, and Mercedes-Benz mbrace, though Chevy’s is the most comprehensive.

The Teen Driver expansion comes in the wake of a small online survey of 638 parents with teens, where 55 percent said the biggest worry is their teen driving without supervision, followed closely by academics (53 percent), drug and alcohol use (52 percent) and sexual activity (49 percent).

There was no corresponding poll asking teens if they worried about mom and dad becoming Big Brother.

Teen Driver Technology, with industry-first in-vehicle report card, displays to parents how their teen drove including how far they traveled, top speed reached, and whether available active safety features were activated. (TNS)
http://limaohio.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/web1_safe.jpgTeen Driver Technology, with industry-first in-vehicle report card, displays to parents how their teen drove including how far they traveled, top speed reached, and whether available active safety features were activated. (TNS)

By Robert Duffer

Chicago Tribune

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