BMW X1 Fails Pedestrian Detection Test, Doesn’t Even Get A Rating!

The latest X1 recently had its automatic emergency braking system put through its paces during testing from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IHHS) against 10 other SUVs in its class. Unfortunately for BMW, its SUV came in last place and received no rating.

The IIHS pedestrian autobrake test consists of frontal crash avoidance, headlights, and rear crash prevention tests. Three crash simulations are conducted for each vehicle.

The first mimics a pedestrian quickly entering the street in front of an oncoming vehicle. The second test sees a small child entering the roadway from behind two parked cars. The third test replicates an adult walking along the edge of a lane in the same direction as the vehicle. Testing of the first two scenarios is conducted at 12 mph (19 km/h) and 25 mph (40 km/h), while the third test is performed at 25 mph (40 km/h) and 37 mph (59 km/h).

IIHS awarded four of the 11 SUVs (the Honda CR-V, Subaru Forester, Toyota RAV4, and Volvo XC40) its superior rating. These vehicles were either able to brake without hitting the pedestrians at all in all simulations or were able to brake significantly before making minor contact with the dummy.

Five other vehicles were awarded the Advanced rating, while the Mitsubishi Outlander got the Basic rating. All vehicles outperformed the BMW X1 which didn’t even get a rating as it hit the dummy in every single test. In the 37 mph parallel adult test, the SUV’s pedestrian detection system didn’t even recognize the dummy and smashed straight through it without braking.


  • Jay

    Simple fix, upgrade all pedestrians so that they look both ways before crossing. Next is to upgrade drivers so that they keep their eyes on the road, sidewalks/areas close to the road where people can easily not give a darn and walk out from.

    • Andrewthecarguy

      Hold on there Jay, you are making too much sense 🙂

    • Momogg

      That’s a great idea!

    • Stigasawuswrecks

      You know what they say, make something idiot proof and they’ll make a better idiot.

  • Roland Fairwater

    Are we absolutely certain that this X1 was equipped with the system? Because I’ve never seen anything like this.

    • D-splash

      Someone inform the IIHS to double check, because Roland Fairwater has never seen anything like this!

      (just kidding, and according to the BMW website, the X1 with the Driving Assistant package includes “camera-based Approach control warning and Person warning with city braking function”)

      • Andrewthecarguy

        Roland might be on to something. Perhaps the system was not turned on??

        • DMJ

          You cant turn off pedestrian detection in BMWs.

  • D-splash

    Considering BMW’s are designed to give zero f**ks about other human beings, these results makes sense. And in case you’re wondering about how they ranked…

    2018-19 Honda CR-V
    2019 Subaru Forester
    2019 Toyota RAV4
    2019 Volvo XC40

    2019 Chevrolet Equinox
    2018-19 Hyundai Kona
    2019 Kia Sportage
    2018-19 Mazda CX-5
    2019 Nissan Rogue

    2019 Mitsubishi Outlander

    No Credit
    2018-19 BMW X1

    • RDS Alphard

      Toyota get superior credit? Then this test could be questionable. XD


        well Toyotas are reliable

        • PK

          not reliable as you think. i trust honda way more than toyota.

          • EL CHAPO THA GREAT

            Well that’s your opinion.

          • PK

            why thank you it is.

          • EL CHAPO THA GREAT


          • PK


    • LeStori

      Hijack ratings

      Best to worst.

      1) Superior

      2) Advanced
      3) Basic
      4) Don’t…

  • charlotteharry57

    The thing I can’t stand about IIHS ratings is that they give credit to a vehicle IF certain systems are AVAILABLE BUT NOT STANDARD. Which is not consumer-friendly. For example, the Equinox tested only offers automatic braking (it does have Ped Detect) on the top-tier Premier trim level and is not available on any other trim (typical GM). It should not get credit for it if it isn’t STANDARD across the board. Period.

  • This is actually a feature to enhance the BMW driving experience.

  • Craig

    A great ‘thing’ to have – if it works. But what’s stopping the car behind ‘you’ from pushing ‘you’ into and over that pedestrian?

    • Beelzaboot teriaksun

      the same kind of system, i guess

      • Craig

        You’re obviously a ‘half-glass-full’ kind of guy!

        • Beelzaboot teriaksun

          having my car rearended multiple times, all I can say is that I’m trying lol

  • jrelon

    i mean, I know it has terrible real world implications, but dammit if that video didn’t make me laugh watching that mannequin getting comically exploded.

  • Deathrace 2000

  • DanSemering

    When you see a BMW jump over the fence 🙂

  • Eagle By Singer

    Nooo! Not little Timmy!!

  • Robert Dodd

    The BMW system was design to mimic the response of actual BMW drivers.

  • Blanka Li

    Wow, BMW’s are actually DESIGNED to ignore everything around them. And I thought it was just the a-holes who bought them.

  • dumblikeyou2

    That mechanical little boy is pretty awesome though.

  • StrangerGP

    GTA mother**cker yeah 10 points!

    • Mr. EP9

      Ah, I remember that movie.

  • Lou

    ok.. maybe im wrong for this.. but that was great entertainment.

    for anyone who has a comment about me laughing…. i have this crazy idea, maybe the drivers should just pay attention and not have a vehicle drive for them?

  • DMJ

    I have a 2019 5-series that has pedestrian detection and automatic braking and I have to say that I dont trust it. The few times that I was distracted on traffic it didn’t even gave a warning, and the only time that the pedestrian detection worked, it blipped and brake the car 1 second when the pedestrian was just jogging on the sidewalk!!! The only person scared was me, and luckily I didn’t had cars following me.

  • As well as keeping a safe distance behind…unless you drive an Audi, of course.

  • Bhaskar Manda

    That’s nothing, BMW. Teslas do that to cyclists!

    • Sébastien

      You mean Volvo?

      • D3X

        nah that was Uber

  • LJ

    I’d say the front end of the BMW detected the pedestrian just fine.

  • FlameWater

    It’s not designed to detect peasants

  • Loquacious Borborygmus

    The BMW advance driving technology. Yesterday’s technology today!
    Brought to you by Cyberdyne Systems.

  • uS’gedlemba

    Maybe it actually knows it’s not a real person.

    • Rick Evans

      So if it hits a tree, that’s okay.

      • Beelzaboot teriaksun

        yes because then there wouldn’t be any loss lol

  • Sébastien

    It’s a driver’s car… Not a pedestrian car, that’s confirmed.

    • marioGTI

      Agreed! Ultimate driving machines are meant to be driven, not just to stink in it with a lit up brick in hand!

  • Arg

    BMW spokesman: “Our sensors are based on detecting heat. Dummies are cold.”

    • Paul

      Cold hearted and faceless dummies. See, the car really is smarter than they think.

  • ace_9

    I would say that’s practically expected and desired. BMWs (especially SUVs) are already blinding everyone else on the road and until recently it was not even possible to use indicators in a reasonable manner. They make obnoxious cars for obnoxious people. I’m sure some BMW owners would not even buy it if they knew that it doesn’t allow ramming people on the road when the driver feels like it. They also need to often tail-gate other drivers and certainly would not welcome any system preventing that.

    • Beelzaboot teriaksun


  • Craig

    ‘HOPE’ plays a big part in every drive.

  • exeptor

    Nah, the important one is that you can “finger” your BMW … this pedestrian stuff is not for hipsters.

    • TheHake

      That exhaust outlet is too hot for that…

  • David De Fortier

    Highjackers will surely take advantage of this

  • Paul

    Next they need to design a system that automatically zeros in on these wayward pedestrians and takes them out kind of like a cleansing of society of sorts.

    • TheHake


  • LeStori

    OK so you buy the BMW if you do not want to be hijacked and one of the other if you do. Choice is simple.

    Unless your vehicle come standard with auto lock doors and break resistant laminated side and rear windows you do not want this “safety”feature.

  • LeStori

    Young humans are not road ready when loose in nature. Any child before the age of 10 is likely to be at high risk near a road. After that they are jsut plane dangerous .

    As for road deaths in general. Anyone between the ages of 17 and 64 should not be allowed to drive. They make up around 75% of road deaths

  • Big Black Duck

    typical BMW driver

  • Rick Evans

    From your own source: “It’s unclear if the driver in Friday’s crash had applied the autonomous technology at the time of the collision.”

  • TheHake

    Take that, DUMMY!

  • kDawg

    Damn, someone at BWW is going to get fired over this. lol

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