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Nissan's new gas pedal has a mind of its own

Not too many years ago, Audi got into a big mess with cars that were accused of having accelerator pedals with minds of their own. Nissan now says it has developed a system that gives its cars' gas pedals the ability to think, and it sounds pretty smart.

In conjunction with a frontal radar system and onboard computer, the car can tell when it's getting too close to a vehicle or object in front of it and lifts the gas pedal in response, which is supposed to alert the driver to impending danger. If the driver agrees and lifts his foot off the pedal, the system applies the brakes and brings the car to a complete stop. If the driver continues to push the pedal down, the system won't interfere and car plus driver will continue on to meet their fate together.

The system will be available this year in Japan, and reportedly next year on U.S. spec cars. The smart pedal system is part of a big technology/safety push within Nissan that also includes its anti-drunk driving system and pedestrian-friendly hood we've shown you before.

[Source: Detroit News]

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