May 19 marked 25 years since Bosch introduced electronic stability control to the new-car market.
This ground-breaking technology debuted on the 1995 Mercedes-Benz S-Class.
Bosch claims the then-revolutionary technology has gone on to save 15,000 lives, as well as prevent approximately 500,000 personal injury crashes.
Since 1995, Bosch has continually improved the capabilities of the technology, and has produced more than 250 million stability control systems to date.
Stability control works by adding another layer of technology to a vehicle's Antilock Braking System (ABS) and Traction Control (TC). In conjunction with this pre-existing technology, extra sensors that can determine vehicle trajectory and modulate brakes and throttle to help prevent the vehicle from skidding in a corner or a sharp swerve.
“The development of the electronic stability program was a milestone on the path to our ‘vision zero’ of no more road deaths,” says the Bosch board of management member Harald Kroeger.
“ESP is an outstanding example of what we mean by ‘Invented for life.”
Worldwide, Bosch estimates 82 per cent of all new cars sold last year were equipped with stability control. In 2017, the ratio was 64 per cent.
In Australia, stability control became mandatory for passenger cars and light vehicles on November 1, 2013. This came off the back of Victoria making the safety technology mandatory on January 1, 2011.
On November 1, 2014, 13 other countries followed suit by making stability control mandatory in their markets, including Japan, the United States, Canada, New Zealand.
In conjunction with the invention of the seatbelt and the airbag, Bosch claims stability control makes up the trio of the most important and significant safety developments ever produced for the automotive industry.