Easy to implement from a

Technical point
of view

The front brake lamp must be considered as a light-signalling function LSF (from the term light-signalling function) with a light intensity comparable to other LSFs on vehicles, since a version with a lower light intensity would not be suitable for the purpose.

When designing a new LSF on motor vehicles, the question of the appropriate colour of light to be used is always an issue - both legally and factually.

Since other colours are already legally assigned to specific situations or to specific types of vehicles, only the use of green or white is an option.

Given the already existing high number and range of variations of forward-facing white light signals (low beam, high beam, fog lamps, etc.), the use of a white front brake light could contribute to the reception of ambiguous information, thereby nullifying its contribution to road safety.

However, the green colour is not yet used for LSF on motor vehicles and thus offers the advantage of uniqueness and quick identification of the light signal emitted.

In addition, this colour is well known from the road traffic environment (e.g. traffic lights). Compared to other colours, the green colour, for the purpose of the front brake light, is also supported by psychological considerations, especially as regards the red colour.

It is assumed that the front brake light will be connected directly to the rear brake light and therefore only one additional device needs to be connected to otherwise identical circuits in the control unit(s).

When it comes to the design of the front brake light, there are several variations, depending on the type of vehicle and its design. The implementation of a front brake light in existing vehicle concepts is therefore technically easier.

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The European Parliament's report Saving Lives: making the EU safer for cars, published in 2017 as part of a major review of means and requirements to improve road safety, highlights that:

"In order to improve road safety, the perception of slowing vehicles by other road users should be facilitated by the use of clear signal lights on vehicles. The mandatory use of emergency braking indicators in the form of flashing brake lights or flashing warning lights is expected." [no. 37].

The mention of signal lights for signalling deceleration in general, which is not limited to emergency braking, gives a strong indication of the need for permanent and regular front signalling, given that rear signalling of deceleration has been around for a long time.

The present concept of a front brake light is therefore fully in line with these stated objectives, particularly since the use of the colour green provides the required uniqueness of signal.

At the same time, future requirements for mandatory driver assistance systems were mentioned in this report. Although the introduction of front brake lights is currently only planned on a voluntary basis, it can be concluded from this report that a system meeting these requirements is in line with the EU's objectives, in particular because:

  • there is scientific evidence of a significant contribution to improving road safety
  • delivers a positive cost-benefit ratio
  • there is no significant financial burden on citizens (price increases)
  • possibility of integration into the periodic technical inspection

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Preliminary results