A new IAM RoadSmart simulator study has found that in-car infotainment systems can impair driving performance to potentially dangerous levels.
The study, entitled “Interacting with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay when driving – the effect on driver performance” was commissioned by IAM RoadSmart and undertaken by TRL, with support from the FIA and the Rees Jeffreys Road Fund. It found that that the latest in-vehicle infotainment systems, designed to improve road safety, are failing and in fact impair reaction times behind the wheel more than alcohol and cannabis use.
Drivers completed a series of three drives on the same simulated test route to assess the level of impact of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
Results showed that reaction times at motorway speeds increased average stopping distances to between four and five car lengths. Drivers took their eyes off the road for as long as 16 seconds while driving (equivalent to a distance of more than 500 metres at 70 mph), and using touch control resulted in reaction times that were even worse than texting while driving. Use the link below to see the full report.