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Chery working on range-wide ADAS recalibration

Overzealous advanced driver assist systems to be tamed by Chery's local tuning program

25 Mar 2024

CHERY Australia has embarked on a program to recalibrate the advanced driver assist systems (ADAS) of its cars, in particular the Omoda 5 small SUV that ruffled some feathers from a safety perspective when it arrived last year. 
Intrusive ADAS on early delivered Omoda 5 models drew criticism for being overzealous in taking control of the vehicle, such as lane-keep assist that would strongly pull on the steering wheel if it detected a driver drifting towards the edge of a lane, regardless of whether the driver was making deliberate inputs to avoid potholes or other obstacles. 
Concerns were held over other aspects of the ADAS package that included an over-sensitive driver attention monitoring system that would sound alarms and display poorly translated messages admonishing the driver for looking anywhere but dead ahead at all times. 
Needless to say, the overactive ADAS elicited plenty of criticism for “jumping at shadows” and even prompted an admission from influential safety group ANCAP, which had awarded a five-star rating to the Omoda 5, that it did not test vehicles in the “real world”. 
This was a potentially worrying admission given the gravitas which ANCAP is afforded and led to speculation that ADAS calibrations from Chery and other brands were more geared toward a favourable ANCAP outcome than genuine collision prevention and mitigation. 
Chery Australia managing director Lucas Harris had by late last year taken the ADAS criticism on board and at the preview to the company’s incoming Omoda E5 BEV announced that two Chery engineers had been in Australia in recent months recalibrating the ADAS to better reflect local requirements. 
“We have had two engineers here from head office to retune the ADAS for local suitability as the first models to arrive here were set up for Chinese roads and drivers,” he said. 
“We got plenty of feedback from buyers, the media and dealers about the Omoda 5’s ADAS and decided to implement a local validation program that would improve driving dynamics.” 
Though the Omoda 5 passes ANCAP crash testing with a five-star rating, Mr Lucas said he wanted real-world validation that could be used across all Chery models and retrofitted as needed. 
“We took the program further to include more local dynamics tuning across the entire model range that is reflected in the new models coming through. 
“We place a huge amount of importance on ADAS tuning for Australia and will use the information from this rigorous program to specify all future models, including for ride and handling set-up,” Mr Harris revealed. 
The ADAS news comes after Chery Australia announced the new Tiggo 7 Pro medium SUV was the first model to be put through local testing before sale, with a focus on active safety systems. 
At the Tiggo 7 Pro launch, Mr Harris told GoAuto the model had undergone “just short of 50,000km of road adaptation in Australia prior to launch”. 
He said this was “largely focused on driver support systems and making sure that they work as best as they can in local conditions which are very varied”. 
While the new Tiggo 7 Pro has, according to Mr Harris, “basically been to every capital city and everywhere in between during the validation and adaptability program”, he admitted that no suspension tuning or feedback was included for this model, but would be in the future. 
“One of the main focuses for us with Tiggo 7 Pro and other models moving forward was having local adaptability and validation of the vehicle, not just safety systems which is the focus for everyone, but the car more generally – the ride and handling, the dynamic feeling,” he added. 
“You’ll see that in future generations – the fruit of that labour”. 
Chery Australia will broaden this safety work locally according to Mr Harris, with Chery Australia employing safety experts. 
“We’re in the process now of employing our own experts, that have come from local industry, but are looking for partners who are specialised in that area also,” he concluded. 
Although well-intentioned, for many drivers the calibration of ADAS in an increasing number of new vehicles has made concentrating on the job at hand difficult. 

Deactivating these systems requires a dive into the touchscreen’s menus to do so one by one – and in most cases they reactivate every time the vehicle is started.

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