The Mobileye C2-270 is a system that uses a windshield-mounted camera to give warnings for lane departure, frontal collisions, pedestrians, cyclists and speeding. It can also be configured to operate the headlights. I used one for 18 months.
It stopped working, and was wreaking havoc with the dashboard electronics in my Escape. So it had to be taken out. Unfortunately the warranty is only 12 months, so besides wasting the original purchase and installation, I would have to pay about $1300 to have a new one installed. The risk of a repeat failure dampens my enthusiasm to replace it and I have to say I'm a bit pi$$ed at what's happened.
As is consistent with other reviews of this thing on the Internet, its performance was at least very good. The collision avoidance, lane departure warning, and pedestrian/cyclist detection were excellent. They worked properly even in conditions you would expect would defeat the system, such as dark, rain, and dark+rain. And in snow, except that of course it can't see lane markings on a snow-covered road.
The collision warning seemed very sophisticated, and seemed to vary not just depending on your speed and the speed of the vehicle ahead, plus the distance; but also according to whether you or the other vehicle were speeding up or slowing down. Besides warning at a distance, it would also freak out if you were a few feet behind another vehicle and still moving. It seemed to not be confused by the size difference between cars and trucks/buses.
Sometimes the lane departure warning would trigger due to lines on the pavement that were not lane lines. Such as after roads are repaired. Occasionally an oncoming vehicle would trigger the collision warning on sharp corners.
The speed limit sign reading was annoyingly unreliable. Its worst habit was reading onramp/offramp speed warning signs and then complaining you were going, say, 55kph over the speed limit. The various functions were set up to operate above or below various speeds. For instance, you don't want the lane departure warning operating when you're driving around parking lots, so LDW works only above a certain speed.
Overall, very impressive. Fleet operators are finding accidents by their professional drivers are reduced something like 25% with these devices, so they're well worth the somewhat steep cost. (near $1300 these days, installed)
Some models of the C2-270, unlike the newer C2-560, can be installed in older cars that don't have a CAN bus.
The Mobileye can be set up to turn on the headlights in dim light and look after dimming the high beams, but this costs extra to wire it up and I didn't have this function installed.
There's something called iOnRoad, which is an app that uses a smartphone to track clearance to vehicles ahead. However the Mobileye did much more than that, such as lane departure warning. Hopefully soon there will be apps that tie into the CAN bus (perhaps using a bluetooth ELM-27) that provide these other features without adding to dashboard clutter -- and without costing a fortune.
While looking for information on similar products, I came across five enhanced dashcams:
Optian Advanced Driver Assistance System
While Mobileye has forward collision alert, lane departure warning, cyclist and pedestrian warning, speed limit sign recognition and headlight dimming functions, the Boyo product has only lane departure warning, and the Vacron and Soundstream have only lane departure warning and forward collision alert.
But these have the dashcam function, which Mobileye does not. On the other hand, the Mobileye 560 can be fed to a smartphone, which none of these can do.
A huge advantage is that while the Mobileye currently costs almost $1000, the Soundstream is about $80, with the other two running about $200.
It remains to be seen whether the fca and ldw functions on these units work as well as on the Mobileye, on which they were impressive. I can do without the speed limit warning, since I'm not an excessive speeder and it was always reading exit ramp speed signs and freaking out. I didn't have the headlight function wired up.
Reliability is also a question, but obviously I'm not impressed by the expensive Mobileye.
The Mobileye requires professional installation, at significant cost, while the others do not. It would require a little car wiring expertise to hook the Soundstream up to the turn signal wires.
The Soundstream will also start recording when the car is shut off and it senses an impact. To enable that requires more wiring to get 12V power with ignition off, and risks draining the battery.
The Optian Advanced Driver Assistance System and Audiovox LDWS100 are both around $600. It's interesting that these plus the Soundstream use GPS to determine vehicle speed, while the Mobileye gets it off the CAN bus. Probably that is superior since the Mobileye can tell if you are changing speed and modifies the calculations accordingly. That should make the Mobileye more accurate.
Such systems have been proven to reduce accidents. Maybe there should be an insurance discount for having one.
2006 Suzuki Grand Vitara JLX-L, ~Maroon Red
2009 Escape Hybrid Limited AWD, Black, bought Jan.2013
- replaced ambient temperature sensor
- replaced hvac blend door motor
- updated SYNC software
- replaced water pump
- brake job
- replaced steering column
- replaced TPMS sensor
- multiple rear hatch water leaks fixed
- rattle in dashboard resolved as loose bolt in steering column coupler
- replaced underbody a/c lines to rear hvac
- replaced backup sensor
- replaced sway bar links
- replaced one outer tie rod (105,000 miles)
- replaced right front wheel bearing
- replaced ball joints
- another brake job