Skoda uses ‘swarm’ data to warn drivers of dangers on the road ahead

Skoda has developed ‘swarm’ data which is able to warn drivers of its cars about approaching hazards on the road.

Called the Skoda ‘Local Hazard Information Service’, the system uses anonymised data which is then shared with fellow motorists about poor road conditions. It can even detect smaller issues, such as potholes.

The more vehicles that supply the data, the more accurate the analyses and predictions become. Skoda expects more than three million Volkswagen Group vehicles to supply the data in Europe by the end of 2022, in fact.

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Available for the firm’s Enyaq iV, new Fabia, Kamiq, Octavia, Scala and Superb models in the UK as part of the Skoda Connect services, the feature uses accelerometers and ABS sensors to measure the acceleration and braking of the car, while virtual sensors estimate the friction between the tyres and road surface based on the amount of wheel slip.

This data, when combined, is then transmitted to the cloud where it is combined with weather information or previous data. Then, alerts are sent out to a car’s infotainment system should it detect that it’s approaching or within an area with poor road surfaces.

Sebastian Lasek, head of product line connectivity at Skoda, said: “The system uses the car’s sensors to detect challenging road conditions in advance. To this end, the ‘Local Hazard Information Service’ increases active safety for drivers and passengers. We are continuously developing our connectivity services to offer our customers extra safety features and even more convenience.”