How 'app trial' shows we're not the drivers we think we are
Published 22/06/2016 | 02:30
An experiment which tracked every little turn of the steering wheel by drivers found a significant difference between how they thought they drove and how they really fared.
The conclusion was reached after 40 volunteers in Ford Fiestas spent four months/4,000 hours driving 160,000kms.
The level of detailed monitoring by plug-in devices was extraordinary. It included the slightest turns of the steering wheel, braking, time, weather and reactions.
And a prototype driving app calculated 'personal driver scores' based on behaviour, acceleration and steering.
The trial was carried out by Ford and was designed so drivers with higher scores could ultimately benefit from lower insurance, car-hire etc.
The idea is that drivers use the app much like some monitor exercise or weight-loss.
The 'Driver Behaviour Project' also looked at how the volunteers responded to stressful situations; and a simulator was used to track eye movement and heart rate.
The end result was a personal score from all inputs which were accessed by the prototype app.
That lets drivers see what affected their scores - such as driving in the correct gear and their 'interaction' with the car. It calculated a score for each journey.
The volunteers could see how they fared on each journey and their trends over time.