GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

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Thread: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

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    GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Source: General Motors


    Photo shows new GM D-Optic LED headlamps (standard on High Country and Premier).

    GM has announced that a new type of LED lamp assembly will be standard on Premier and High Country models, but the new order guide, published March 10th, shows that high intensity discharge lamps will be STANDARD on ALL other models. Quite a step up, and considering the new IIHS headlamp testing program; quite timely.

    IIHS Information:

    About half of all fatal crashes in the U.S. occur in the dark, and more than a quarter occur on unlit roads.

    Headlights have an obvious role to play in preventing nighttime crashes, but not all headlights perform their job equally. Differences in bulb type, headlight technology and even something as basic as how the lights are aimed all affect the amount of useful light supplied.

    Headlight technology has been developing rapidly in recent years. LED and high-intensity discharge (HID) lamps have begun to replace the traditional halogen ones. Many automakers offer curve-adaptive headlights, which respond to steering and swivel according to the direction of travel. Many also offer high-beam assist, a feature that can increase the use of high beams by automatically switching between high beams and low beams based on the presence of other vehicles.

    At the same time, government regulations about headlights don't guarantee consistency when it comes to the amount of illumination they provide in actual on-road use. This has resulted in large variation in headlight performance. Many vehicles sold today have inadequate headlights, despite the recent strides in lighting technology.

    How headlights are tested:

    IIHS engineers measure the reach of a vehicle's headlights as the vehicle travels straight and on curves. Sensors on the track measure how far from the vehicle the light extends with an intensity of at least 5 lux. A lux is a unit of illuminance, or the amount of light falling on a surface. For comparison, a full moon on a cloudless night illuminates the ground below to about 1 lux.

    Both low beams and high beams are measured on five approaches:

    Straightaway

    Gradual left curve (800-foot radius)

    Gradual right curve (800-foot radius)

    Sharp left curve (500-foot radius)

    Sharp right curve (500-foot radius)

    On each approach, visibility measurements are taken on the right edge of the roadway. On the curves, measurements also are taken on the left edge of the travel lane. On the straightaway, the second measurement is taken at a point corresponding to the left edge of a two-lane road. This allows the engineers to gauge the illumination on both the right and left side of a straightaway, which are typically quite different. With most headlights, there is a steep drop-off in light on the left side of a straight road in order to prevent glare to oncoming vehicles.

    Glare for oncoming vehicles is also measured from low beams in each scenario. Engineers record the percentage by which it exceeds a set threshold.

    Headlights are tested as received from the dealer. Although many headlight problems could be resolved by adjusting the aim of the lamps, IIHS doesn't change headlight aim. Few vehicle owners adjust the vertical aim of their headlights, so leaving the aim the way it was set at the factory makes the testing more realistic. Horizontal aim also is important, but in most vehicles it can't be changed after the initial factory setting.

    Readings are taken 10 inches from the ground for visibility and 3 feet, 7 inches from the ground for glare.
    How ratings are assigned

    IIHS engineers compare the results of the testing with a hypothetical ideal headlight system. Using a system of demerits, they apply the visibility and glare measurements to determine the rating.

    In this system, the low beams are weighted more heavily than the high beams because they are used more often. The readings on the straightaway are weighted more heavily than those on the curves because crashes are more common on straight sections of road.

    A vehicle with no demerits doesn't exceed the glare threshold on any approach and provides illumination to at least 5 lux over the distances shown in the graphic below. Longer visibility distances are required on the straightaway compared with the curves because vehicles tend to travel at higher speeds while going straight. Similarly, greater visibility is required on gradual curves compared with sharp curves.
    headlight range graphic

    Vehicles equipped with high-beam assist get their low beam demerits reduced. This credit is given only for approaches on which the high beams provide more visibility than the low beams.




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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Hats off to GM for improving base model headlight output with the all-new Chevrolet Traverse.

    Let's hope this new technology will spread to all GM products with less than IIHS "acceptable" headlamp systems.


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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Few vehicle owners adjust the vertical aim of their headlights, so leaving the aim the way it was set at the factory makes the testing more realistic. Horizontal aim also is important, but in most vehicles it can't be changed after the initial factory setting.
    This is why sometimes the IIHS gets a bad wrap. You don't adjust the headlights at all? None? What if they were bumped and knocked out of alignment before you got the car? People need to take SOME accountability with this crap.

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Good move.

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    They don't want the negative press like what happenned with the Buick Lacrosse

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Quote Originally Posted by bballr4567 View Post
    This is why sometimes the IIHS gets a bad wrap. You don't adjust the headlights at all? None? What if they were bumped and knocked out of alignment before you got the car? People need to take SOME accountability with this crap.
    IF the maker is shipping cars with "bad" headlight AIM and they "fixed" it before testing then the consumer OWNED cars would NOT perform as well as tested

    I personally think GM / any other maker should NOT GET KUDOS until the BASE spec PERFORMS as WELL as the PREMIER trim models and these do NOT offer that and GM if forcing you to pay for a VERY EXPENSIVE model to get the best performing headlights (ASSUMING the LED IS better then the HID units and I would )

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    I think this LED Lamp system should be standard, The upper end should be the Intellilux system.


    Ken

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Hoping the Malibu and Cruze see an option for advance headlamps. It's crazy to think that in this market you can't even option HID's on these cars.

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Quote Originally Posted by kmacleod View Post
    I think this LED Lamp system should be standard, The upper end should be the Intellilux system.


    Ken
    Intellilux system is illegal here due to US laws.

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Quote Originally Posted by bballr4567 View Post
    This is why sometimes the IIHS gets a bad wrap. You don't adjust the headlights at all? None? What if they were bumped and knocked out of alignment before you got the car? People need to take SOME accountability with this crap.
    Never knew you even could

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    As IIHS has already pointed out, neither HID lights or LED lights guarantee good lighting. It's about the intensity and spread. I hope GM is focused on that and not the technology.

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Quote Originally Posted by sfbreh View Post
    Never knew you even could
    The GTO only illuminated about 20' of concrete in front of the car with the factory aim. It was terrible. I'd say the majority of GTO owners adjusted their headlights upwards, and then they became pretty good. First car I ever owned with projectors (halogen of course).
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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Quote Originally Posted by sfbreh View Post
    Never knew you even could
    Oh yea. Most factory lights are set but then the bumper is placed on the car throwing them out of whack. It's the first thing I usually check. The Camaro was spot on.

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    I think the best available lighting technology for headlights should be MANDATED for all cars and trucks, along with automatic headlights. It's a safety issue

    No exceptions.

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    Re: GM Makes Improvements In >Standard< Headlights With New Traverse

    Quote Originally Posted by kmacleod View Post
    I think this LED Lamp system should be standard, The upper end should be the Intellilux system.


    Ken
    Quote Originally Posted by bballr4567 View Post
    Intellilux system is illegal here due to US laws.
    That's a shame. It's a safety feature, ffs. What's the problem with it?


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