One of the most common accidents that occurs when merging is when one vehicle -- the one that's changing lanes -- hits another vehicle slightly behind it and to its side because the driver of the first vehicle couldn't see the second one in his mirror. To prevent this from happening, Mercedes-Benz has developed a new safety feature called Blind Spot Assist, which it plans to debut on its S-class and CL-Class models.

Similar to a system already developed by Volvo, the new safety feature employs six short-range radar sensors located in the front and rear bumpers that monitor the zone to the side and rear of the car on both the left and the right. If another car is driving alongside in the blind sport area, the system will display a red warning symbol in the associated side mirror. If the driver ignores the warning and then turns on their indicator, the red warning symbol with start to flash and emit a warning sound inside the car.

While we're sure such systems will prevent accidents, they could lead to a generation of drivers that are largely unaware of vehicles around them and who rely solely on such gadgets to keep them out of trouble.

[Source: Mercedes Benz]
PRESS RELEASE

Mercedes-Benz now offers a newly developed Blind Spot Assist system as an option for its S and CL-Class models, which is designed to help drivers when changing lanes.
Mercedes-Benz employs six short-range radar sensors for the new assistance system, which can be found in the front and rear bumpers. The sensors monitor the zone to the side and rear of the car on both the left and the right. In so doing, they cover the area known as the "blind spot" which drivers are unable to see in the exterior mirrors.
If the system detects another vehicle in the danger zone, a red warning symbol appears in the exterior mirror glass. This symbol informs the driver that it may be dangerous to change lanes. Should the driver ignore this warning and switch on the indicators, the red symbol in the mirror will start to flash and an audible warning will also sound.
Blind Spot Assist is offered for the S and CL-Class in conjunction with other radar-based assistance systems, such as DISTRONIC PLUS proximity control, Brake Assist PLUS, the PRE-SAFE® brake and Parking Guidance. In Germany, this package is priced at between €2594.20 and €3391.50 (ex factory, incl. VAT).