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article imageParents can monitor their teen's driving with new tech

By Caroline Leopold     Sep 10, 2015 in Technology
Chevrolet unveiled a new technology called "Teen Driver" to debut in 2016 where parents can monitor their children's driving habits.
Getting a driver's license is a celebrated right of passage, but parents fear for the safety of their teens on the open road.
Chevrolet announced it will install new technology in its Malibu vehicles to allow parents to supervise their children as they grow into their own as drivers and perhaps stop some bad habits.
Teen driving is serious business and youth under 20 are more likely to get into fatal car crashes than other age groups. Motor vehicle collisions are the leading cause of death for American teens, reports the Centers for Disease Control.
Chevy has named the new technology Teen Driver, which tracks car data and tells parents how well their child has been driving. The system can measure distance driven, maximum speed, how many times the car came to a sudden swerve or stop, when the car had to engage stability control and anti-lock brakes, as well as the number of alerts issued by other safety features.
Those features, such as traction control, forward collision alert or forward collision braking, are automatically turned on when Teen Driver is activated through a preprogrammed key
The system also has safety features — the radio, for example, is muted until all front seat belts are fastened. Also, a maximum volume for the radio can be set. Parents can program a maximum speed for driving (up to 75 miles per hour) and will alert the driver about driving above the family-imposed speed limit.
Except for turning off the radio, the car will not interfere with driving. Teens have the choice to drive in any manner they choose. The programming is not meant to take over the car. Instead, it offers parents and young drivers to communicate better about road safety.
"We designed this to be used as a teaching tool," Chevrolet engineer and mother MaryAnn Beebe told CNN. "It gives the teen a chance to prove to mom and dad, 'Hey, I've been driving responsibly,' and if there are things on the report that need discussion."
Ford Motor Co. introduced a similar feature, MyKey, on the 2010 Ford Focus that is now standard on more than 6 million Ford vehicles. Like the Chevy product, MyKey won't let passengers use the radio until they buckle up. Also, MyKey lets parent block explicit radio stations and blocks phone calls and text messages, according to Automotive News.
The 2016 Chevy Malibu will be available to consumers in fall 2015. The price of Teen Driver has not yet been announced, but it will come standards in one car model. Chevrolet plans to have Teen Driver installed as a standard feature on all its cars in the future.
More about Teen driver, Chevrolet Malibu, Chevrolet, my key
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