Understanding How You and Your Car Perform

Hi, I’m Steve Hammes from DriveTime. Understanding your car’s performance limits as well as your own is a critical skill.

Several factors affect the time it takes to stop a vehicle safely including, perception distance.  That is how far your car travels from the sight of a hazard until brain recognition.  Next, reaction distance reflects the difference in space traversed from the time the brain signal is issued to the foot being applied to the brake pedal.

Once you’ve pressed the brake pedal, braking distance is how far your car continues until it stops, while your own reaction distance represents the limit of your performance.

In a typical car, driven at 55 miles per hour, it will take approximately six seconds to fully stop. This is roughly the length of a football field. The higher the speed, the longer it will take to completely stop your vehicle.  Therefore, it is very important to understand both your car’s performance and yours as a driver.

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