Now available as a factory-installed option at most of the major North American truck manufacturers, Bendix Wingman Fusion is improving highway safety on thousands of vehicles, with growing numbers of fleets and drivers realizing its benefits every day.
Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems, the North American leader in the development and manufacture of active safety and braking solutions for commercial vehicles, introduced the leading-edge system in March 2015, advancing the capabilities and performance of collision mitigation technology into new territory. Fusion is available on an array of medium- and heavy-duty models.
“The response to Wingman Fusion was strong from day one, which we believe reflects its success in integrating and advancing our suite of proven, road-tested Bendix safety technologies,” says Scott Burkhart, Bendix Vice President – Sales, Marketing, and Business Development. “Safety-conscious fleets of many sizes, across a wide range of job applications, are ordering Wingman Fusion for their vehicles, and we continue to hear positive feedback as more drivers experience the system firsthand.”
Widely Available, Often Chosen
In October, Volvo Trucks North America unveiled Volvo Active Driver Assist – which utilizes the collision mitigation technology of Wingman Fusion – as a factory-installed option on its VNL and VNM Series models.
Wingman Fusion has been available on Navistar’s on-highway International ProStar trucks since the system’s unveiling, and was added as an option on the medium-duty International DuraStar line earlier this year.
Kenworth Truck Company began offering Wingman Fusion as an option on its T680 and T880 Class 8 trucks in February, and in October announced the system’s availability on its medium-duty T270 and T370 models.
Peterbilt Motors Company added Fusion as an option on its Model 579 and 567 highway tractors and vocational trucks in summer 2016.
Fleets utilizing tractors with Wingman Fusion have shared positive feedback from their drivers, and believe that in several cases, the system has mitigated collision severity or prevented accidents from occurring. Among the companies equipping vehicles with Wingman Fusion are Baylor Trucking; Cardinal Logistics Management Corporation; Cypress Truck Lines, Inc.; J&M Tank Lines, Inc.; Matheson Trucking, Inc.; NevCal Trucking; and XTL Transport, Inc.
“Bendix is truly privileged to work with so many people in the trucking industry who place a premium on safety and who share our goal of putting every driver out there behind the wheel of the safest and most advanced truck possible,” Burkhart says. “To hear a 30-year driver say that Fusion is great at helping keep him and others safe on the highway; to hear a fleet manager describe a collision that was avoided or an accident that was likely injury-free because Fusion assisted the driver – that’s why everyone here does what they do, and why it matters every day, on every road, over every mile.”
Radar + Camera + Brakes
Unlike radar-only systems, Wingman Fusion combines and cross-checks information from multiple sources to deliver enhanced rear-end collision mitigation, alerts when speeding, and braking on stationary vehicles. Bendix Wingman Fusion also helps drivers avoid additional crash situations, including rollovers, loss-of-control, and sideswipe crashes while prioritizing alerts to help reduce driver distraction.
Built on the Bendix ESP Electronic Stability Program full-stability system, Bendix Wingman Fusion gathers input through radar, video, and the vehicle’s brakes. Then, using deep, multisystem integration, Wingman Fusion creates a highly detailed and accurate data picture. With video, radar, and sensors working together, and not just in parallel, the system realizes events sooner – alerting the driver and decreasing the vehicle’s speed up to twice as much – to potentially help the driver mitigate possible collisions or lessen their severity, typically with fewer false alerts and interventions.
“In developing Wingman Fusion, we went beyond simply combining the elements of radar and camera. Customers are discovering the benefits of truly integrated technologies over existing systems,” says Fred Andersky, Bendix Director of Customer Solutions, Controls group. “Fusion’s capabilities are the result of the software and sensors ‘talking’ together – constantly cross-checking information – and providing a more robust system that is far greater than the sum of its parts.”
The system’s camera is powered by the Mobileye System-on-Chip EyeQ processor with state-of-the-art vision algorithms.
“As we look ahead, technologies that combine radar and camera sensors are important stepping stones to a potential autonomous trucking future,” Andersky notes. “At Bendix, we believe that evolving driver assistance systems will form the foundation for the autonomous truck, providing drivers and fleets with a growing number of safety and convenience functions for their vehicles.”
Bendix stresses that there is no substitute for skilled, safe drivers practicing safe driving habits, supported by proactive, ongoing driver training programs. While safety systems such as Wingman Fusion help the men and women behind the wheel to be safer, they are not intended to enable or encourage aggressive driving, and responsibility for safe operation of any vehicle remains with the driver at all times.
Wingman Fusion is part of Bendix’s ever-growing portfolio of technology that delivers on safety, as well as other areas critical to the success of fleets and owner-operators: reliability, performance and efficiency, and lower cost of vehicle ownership. By strengthening return on investment through a lower total cost of ownership in equipment and technologies, Bendix aims to make the roadways safer for drivers and passengers everywhere.