From July all new cars in Spain will need an ISA speed system

by Lorraine Williamson
new speed system ISA

MADRID – Many road deaths are caused by accidents involving speeding violations. However, with a new mandatory system, the Spanish government hopes to help drivers respect the speed limits. 

The ISA technology provides information to the driver and interacts with the vehicle. The General Directorate of Traffic (DGT) warns that from July 2022 it will be mandatory to install the Intelligent Speed ​​​​System (ISA, for its acronym in English) in cars. The implementation will apply to all new vehicles approved from next month, as well as new vehicles sold from 2024. See also: What will change with the new traffic law in Spain? 

With this speed control system, the DGT wants to reduce traffic accidents, one of the main causes of death in Spain. They want to prevent up to 25,000 deaths and more than 140,000 serious injuries. In addition they want to contribute to reducing climate change and reducing poor air quality. Therefore, it is hoped that speeding violations are a thing of the past with this system. 

Not only warning, but also delay 

The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) focuses on speed as one of the main causes of accidents and their consequences. The institution, therefore, proposes that technology regulates drivers adhere to the current limits. 

The ISA system links the Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) to the signal recognition system via software. Additionally, it regulates its position on the road in proportion to the speed limit applicable to each section. Consequently, the technology helps drivers to always respect those limits. It also transmits information to the driver and interacts with the vehicle. It not only warns but also automatically limits the speed of the vehicle. 

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How does the information get to the driver? 

The vehicle uses cameras, radar, and GPS in combination with a digital map. It is coupled with the signal recognition system to detect the speed limit of each section of the road and communicate it graphically to the driver through the instruments. He or she can then see the applicable speed limit on the road section where he or she is located at all times. 

What is the difference between ISA and Speed ​​Limiter? 

Unlike the Limiter, the ISA system automatically adjusts to the limit applicable to each of the road sections. It does not allow the driver to go over that limit. With the Limiter, the driver sets the speed limit to receive a warning and, in some cases, acts on the engine control unit. 

Benefits of the ISA 

ISA autonomously adjusts the maximum speed of a vehicle to the applicable restrictions on each road section. As a result, the driver cannot accelerate further than permitted. With this, he or she always meets the established limits, even if he or she cannot pay attention for a while. 

Advanced roadside assistance systems 

According to the DGT report, this device is part of one of eight Advanced Driving Assistance Systems (ADAS) that will become mandatory in newly produced cars on the European market. In addition to ISA, seven other systems will become mandatory in new cars in July, such as the reversing camera with cross-traffic detection, emergency braking, involuntary lane change warning, and a fatigue detector… 

The number of road deaths back to zero is the goal 

These systems are part of the “Vision Zero” program. This is expected to reduce the number of deaths from accidents within the European Union to zero by 2050. 2022 is the first phase. In subsequent years, other series systems will be integrated. However, this new measure regarding the ISA system does not apply to models that have already been registered before July 2022. 

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