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A terrifying experience

  • 23-09-2021 2:49pm
    Registered Users Posts: 315 ✭✭ The Ging and I

    I had a breakdown and needed a tow truck north of Dijon in France last Sunday.

    My insurance covered this plus alternative car. So Im leaving the car rental place and I am on a busy dual carriage way and the car suddenly wants to drive onto the hard shoulder. Some automatic steering aid or lane assist just tried to take over. As always there was no where to stop. I tried letting the steering do its own thing but no it wanted to go right , I tried different positions in the lane it was having none of it. The traffic was heavy and it was raining and getting dark. I found a car park 10k later and tried to ring the hire company. I got through to what sounded like someone talking (French) on a tannoy system and I could not understand a word she said because of the voice distortion.

    I looked everywhere but could find nothing to turn off. So I got a hotel and looked up how to disable it. So next morning Im on the auto route driving out of Vienne on the A32 and the steering tries to take over again. Being Monday its wall to wall artics. Now the car wanted to turn left into the artics that were passing me I could not risk driving faster then 60kph so I had trucks all around me and as i'm driving along the Rhone river no where to stop either.

    I eventually got off the road and got stopped. I turned off the function again but how did it turn its self on ? I opened the biggest car manual I have ever seen and could not find what I did not have a name for.

    BUT I did see the angle of coverage the camera had. I had bandage tape to I blocked the camera wondering would the car start like this - it did and I had no problems at all then.

    Has anybody had this problem ? How is this function supposed to help ?


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,468 ✭✭✭ mikeecho

    Make & model & year?

  • Registered Users Posts: 623 ✭✭✭ galvo_clare

    Unfortunately it gets turned on by default every time you start the car.

    Modern cars have it fitted for NCAP stars.

    I’m in a different car most weeks and it’s the first thing I switch off.

  • Registered Users Posts: 20,856 ✭✭✭✭ Alun

    It's usually called lane keeping assist or something similar. I have it on my car and while it's mildly annoying, it only gently nudges the wheel if it thinks you're straying from the lane. Also it usually automatically re enables itself every time you start the car, so you'll have to remember to turn it off every time.

    Opinions are hotly divided on how useful these systems are, personally I find them a pain in the arse, so turn it off every time, it's become part of my "start up procedure".

  • Registered Users Posts: 315 ✭✭ The Ging and I

    Its a Kia Stonic and its a 2021 car.

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,947 ✭✭✭✭ Toyotafanboi

    I think i heard something to the tune of lane keep assist will be mandatory on every new car sold in the EU from next year, and that's why it's crept into so many models so quickly.

    This is why it defaults to "on" every time the car is resarted. Much like other stuff though, i'm sure it could be coded out but begs the question regarding the coding out of safety features if you are in a tip.

    That said, some brands have far better, more intuitive systems than others. Some of the popular Korean brands though would be safer without it IMO, it's far too agressive.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 20,856 ✭✭✭✭ Alun

    I have a Kia niro, and while I'd say the LKA is annoying, I wouldn't go as far as to say it was so powerful that it would scare me. I suppose though if you'd never experienced it before and weren't expecting it, it would be very disconcerting.

    My main issue with it isn't on well marked main roads, but rural roads with badly worn lane markings that come and go meaning the system keeps engaging and disengaging at random.

    I've read on a Kia forum that you can sort of permanently disable it by wedging something into the gap between the switch and the dashboard, a bit of cable tie works well apparently.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,715 ✭✭✭ SteM

    We have a Hyundai Ioniq PHEV and it's turned off by default. I've turned it on from time to time and it works well. A gentle nudging guidance, certainly nothing severe.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,070 ✭✭✭✭ fryup

    imagine a car rental company hiring out a car like that?? surely OP has grounds to lodge a complaint and seek a refund?

  • Registered Users Posts: 315 ✭✭ The Ging and I

    I made several attempts at letting it do it own thing but it never tried to follow well marked lanes. My insurance company is paying for the rental while I get fixed up. A friend suggested to go get another car from them but I have this car sorted. I will definitely complain when I give it back.

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 13,457 Mod ✭✭✭✭ ednwireland

    had an experience with the autobraking on a suzuki vitara spent a week driving round narrow roads in poland ! real shock first time it triggered when you're not used to it !

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  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    It's not supposed to do it's own thing. It's to correct after you fxuk up by drifting towards a lane marking. You're supposed to steer normally.

    The issue here is with the driver, not the car.

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,947 ✭✭✭✭ Toyotafanboi

    It's not designed to follow lanes consistently just to direct you back in if it thinks you are leaving the lane.

  • Registered Users Posts: 315 ✭✭ The Ging and I

    It definitely wanted to turn right onto the hard shoulder the first time I drove it and left the next day. It never wanted to stay in a lane but I was trying to see what it wanted to do. The car was ok to drive after the function was disabled.

  • Registered Users Posts: 20,856 ✭✭✭✭ Alun

    There are two different and distinct lane assist type functions on Kia cars, LKA (Lane Keeping Assist) and LFA (Lane Following Assist).

    With LKA you still have to steer normally, you can't let go of the wheel and expect it to steer itself.

    LFA is only activated if you also activate the ACC (Active Cruise Control) and in this mode, to a very limited degree, it does "steer itself", although not very well and will back off with even the slightest hint of steering wheel input, and will disengage completely if you let go of the wheel for too long (30 seconds??). It does mean though that on the whole you can hold the steering wheel very lightly and just let it do it's thing. It does get fooled though, and one example is when you come across a motorway exit where the dashed line is absent for a few metres at the start if you get my drift and it tries to nudge you over to the solid line to the left of the off ramp.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,715 ✭✭✭ SteM

    You saying their story doesn't cut the mustard?

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 42,839 Mod ✭✭✭✭ magicbastarder

    have heard a couple of stories of people when trying to pass pedestrians or cyclists on otherwise quiet roads, finding that the steering was directing them back towards the cyclist if they hadn't indicated before starting the pass and pulling out.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,228 ✭✭✭ The J Stands for Jay

    That's a good excuse to fall back on for a punishment passer.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Seems fair. You'll learn to indicate pretty rapidly then, exactly what you are supposed to do.

  • Registered Users Posts: 493 ✭✭ BobHopeless

    Thanks for the heads up OP. I'll be hiring a car in a few weeks in Italy and i'll remember to request a car without this nonsense. Sounds like a pain in the hole.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,426 ✭✭✭ maestroamado

    Does anyone know if there is an easy way to stop car locking automatically when we are driving... I had an instance recently where with hire car abroad in a car park a police car parked too close the drivers door. i had to open passenger door, unlock steering and push the car a little bit so i cou get in drivers side... I closed passenger door and when i went to open drivers door all locked with key in ignition... I did gain access myself eventually but if if i can disarm this function be better for future... I never noticed this feature before but since i notice the hire cars lock all doors as we drive along...

    Any suggestions welcome...

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,372 ✭✭✭ Wildly Boaring

    It's in pretty much every new car.

    It's a safety feature not something to worry about.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,372 ✭✭✭ Wildly Boaring

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,426 ✭✭✭ maestroamado

    I was in an area i know and went to a garage across the road who could do nothing.... The unlock button was down by the gear stick... I then went to a hardware shop and got large lever tool and strong cable but no good... Luckily when i was returning tool i noticed 10mm threaded metre long bar i got 2 and taped ends giving me almost 2 metres and pretty pliable... i squeezed the top corner of the door out and fished the bar down to the spot....


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,922 ✭✭✭ zg3409

    OP those steering assistant features are not meant to self drive or steer the car. You need to keep holding the steering wheel and steer the car. They are far from perfect. You should be easily able to 'overpower' the steering as it's a gentle force.

    Some cars have a physical button to disable it, other cars it's buried in a menu.

    The buttons can vary, but it's typically a car with lines to the side like road markings.