New research shows that the replacement of an OEM windshield with an aftermarket equivalent (OEE) windshield had little to no effect on forward automatic emergency braking (brake assist) (FAEB) and lane departure warning (LDW) ADAS features.

"In recent months, some vehicle manufacturers publicly hypothesized that the ADAS camera calibration procedure mandatory after most windshield replacements could be less efficient when performed on an aftermarket windshield than on an OEM windshield,” said Stéphane Ouimet, Belron Canada’s National Manager of Technical services and processes.

Belron, as the parent company to Speedy Glass and Lebeau Vitres d’autos, is a major a leading provider of ADAS camera calibration services across the country, and decided to undertake the research to allay vehicle owners' concerns

The tests were conducted between October 11-17, 2018 by PMG Technologies (PMG), the laboratory that conducts compliance testing and research on vehicles for Transport Canada. A total of 150 tests were performed – 75 on a Subaru Outback 2017 vehicle and 75 on a Honda CR-V 2017 vehicle – two of the country’s best-selling family vehicles. 

Similar tests were recently conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) on eight different models of vehicles commercialized by as many manufacturers: Acura, Honda, Hyundai, Lexus, Mazda, Mercedes, Subaru and Volvo. IIHS findings following the windshields analysis indicate no clarity or refraction issues when comparing OEM and aftermarket windshields through the refractive index and laser tests.

For all but one vehicle, the Honda Civic 2016, there was no significant performance difference in forward collision warning (FCW), forward automatic emergency braking (FAEB), or lane departure warning (LDW) performance, regardless of the windshield type used, OEM or aftermarket, after the calibration procedure was completed. This exception has been documented for years.

"Industry stakeholders must keep in mind that unlike OEE windshields, which are known to be manufactured in the same facilities and according to the same standards as OEM windshields, other aftermarket windshields may feature different characteristics that could potentially impact camera calibration. Accordingly, given the importance that ADAS cameras have on passengers and road-users, Belron believes that regulatory authorities should consider the implementation of industry standards for calibrations,” said Sylvie Leduc, Belron Canada’s Vice-president of Brand & Customer Promise.

According to data and projections made available by SBD Automotive, more than one in three new cars to be sold in Canada this year will be fitted with a front camera enabling ADAS technologies. As a result, 3,7 million cars will have this technology by the end of 2019; representing nearly 15% of all the vehicles on the road in Canada.

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