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What Is Toyota Pre-Collision System (PCS)?

toyota pre collision system

I know when you’re driving, you are never tempted to look at your phone, not you; this never happens. And this is precisely why Toyota Pre-Collision System is here to help, not you… the other drivers, of course.😉

PCS helps drivers with emergency braking and audio/or visual warnings; the system mitigates frontal collisions by detecting vehicles, pedestrians, or bicyclists.

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How Does Toyota Pre-Collision System Work?

The Pre-Collision System is an advanced safety feature designed to mitigate and avoid a frontal collision. This sophisticated system can detect vehicles, pedestrians, and even bicyclists.

The system will notify the driver if a frontal collision is likely with an audible alert buzzer. The dash will flash bright red, displaying a brake sign in the multi-informational display. (Visual and audio alerts may vary.)

Here is where the PCS steps it up to the next level in certain situations.

Now, you will begin to hear and feel the Toyota Brake Assist (BA) activate by feeling the vehicle decelerate on its own. You will notice the brake force increase, sometimes more than the braking pressure you applied to the brake pedal. This is known as Automatic Emergency Braking.

Toyota's Pre-Collision System Update

As of 2023, some vehicles will get enhanced intersection support. The feature will improve the detection range capability. In some circumstances, this includes oncoming vehicles in multiple lanes when turning in an intersection. With this new system update, PCS is better equipped to detect lateral approaching vehicles, plus it can detect motorcyclists.

Main Components of PCS with Pedestrian Detection

First, you have the Millimeter Wave Radar that can detect vehicles and objects in front of you. Also, as you approach vehicles or objects, the radar will analyze the speed and distance you travel between you and these objects to determine if a collision is probable.

This is paired with a front-facing Wide-Angle, High-Resolution Camera system that can see and recognize vehicles, pedestrians, and bicyclists.

These systems interact with the Toyota Star Safety System on the vehicle to help you avoid a collision or at least mitigate the impacts of a crash.

Toyota Pre-Collision Systeme PCS
Toyota Pre-Collision System Settings Menu Options

How to use the Pre-Collision System

Toyota PCS is generally programmed on by default at the time of delivery when buyers first purchase their vehicles. In case it’s not, this is how you toggle the system on and off.

Using the direction pad on the left side of the steering wheel, you can navigate through the page menus on the multi-information display. Using the direction pad, navigate to the SETTINGS menu and scroll down to the PCS setting. Use the OK/Selector switch in the middle of the direction pad.

On some vehicles, pressing the OK/Selector button will activate or deactivate the Pre-Collision System. On other vehicles, you may be required to press and hold the OK/Selector button to toggle between the PCS on or off.

The PCS system will display a yellow or white icon that indicates a vehicle being rear-ended by another vehicle with a star above and an arrow below. The system is working correctly as long as this icon is not visible.

To make fine-tune adjustments to the PCS, use the Direction pad along with the OK/Selector button and toggle the features to your liking. See your local Toyota dealer if the icon appears and you cannot turn it off.

Toyota Pre-Collision System 1
Direction Pad use to navigate Multi-InformationDisplay
Toyota Pre-Collision System 3
LDA, PDA, and DRCC in Grand Highlander

Benefits of Toyota Pre-Collision System

Early Warning: The system uses radar and cameras to detect vehicles, pedestrians, and sometimes cyclists in front of your car, alerting you with visual and audio signals if it detects a potential collision.

Automatic Braking: If you don’t respond to the warnings in time, the system can automatically apply the brakes to reduce your speed and, if possible, avoid the collision entirely or mitigate the severity of the impact.

Increased Reaction Time: The system gives you more time to take appropriate action by alerting you early about a potential collision.

Adaptive Features: Some versions of PCS are advanced enough to adapt to different driving conditions, such as rain or fog, enhancing its ability to detect obstacles.

Lane Departure Warnings: Some PCS systems also come with Lane Departure Alerts that warn you when you are drifting out of your lane without signaling.

Peace of Mind: Knowing that the system constantly monitors the road in front of you can make driving less stressful.

Enhanced Safety: Overall, the system contributes to a safer driving experience, reducing the likelihood of frontal collisions and associated injuries.

Potential for Insurance Discounts: Some insurance companies offer discounts on vehicles equipped with advanced safety features like PCS.

Driver Awareness: Over time, having a PCS system can make you a more attentive driver as you become accustomed to responding to its warnings.

Integrated Systems: PCS often works with other safety features like Dynamic Radar Cruise Control for a more comprehensive approach to road safety.

Pre-Collision System With Pedestrian Detection
Toyota Pre-Collision System With Pedestrian Detection

Pre-Collision System & Toyota's Safety Sense

Toyota Safety Sense (TSS) is an advanced suite of safety features designed to keep drivers and passengers safer on the road. These innovative technologies help avoid accidents altogether. The following safety technologies are included within the suite:

  • Automatic High Beams (AHB)
  • Road Sign Assist (RSA)
  • Lane Departure Alert (LDA)
  • Pre-Collision System (PCS)
  • Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC)
  • Lane Tracing Assist (LTA)
  • Proactive Driving Assist (PDA)

Recap of Toyota PCS

The Pre-Collision System is always watching even when you are not. Toyota wanted to make their vehicles safer, and the best way to survive a crash is to avoid one altogether. This is the purpose of having a proactive suite of safety features that try to predict the likelihood of a collision and mitigate its effect on you.

It’s always crucial to remember that no system can replace attentive driving, and these technologies are meant to assist rather than substitute the driver’s responsibilities on the road.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the pre-collision system with pedestrian detection?

PCS is designed to mitigate frontal collisions using a radar and camera system to detect vehicles, pedestrians, and bicyclists by providing an audible and visual warning. In the event of a possible crash, PCS can apply Automatic Emergency Braking to help avoid a collision in certain circumstances.

What does pre-collision system unavailable mean?

PCS uses two systems to monitor the road for vehicles and pedestrians. A front-facing camera and radar system. The radar is located behind the Toyota emblem on the front of the vehicle near the hood release. In some vehicles, the radar is behind a tinted clear panel within the grille. The camera is located on the windshield behind the rearview mirror housing. Ensure both areas are thoroughly clean to ensure the system works as intended. In some circumstances, weather, like rain, snow, or wind, may disrupt the system’s function.

Where is the pre-collision system sensor located?

PCS is located in two spots. First, the camera system is located on the windshield and behind the rearview mirror housing. Second, the radar is mounted behind the Toyota emblem on the hood, or on some vehicles, you’ll see a tinted clear panel within the front grille; the radar system will be located behind this panel.

How to reset the pre-collision system?

The PCS system can be toggled on and off using the direction pad on the steering wheel’s left side. Use the direction pad to navigate to the SETTINGS menu. Next, scroll down to PCS and use the OK/Selector button to toggle the system on or off. A light with a car being rear-ended by another car, with a star above and an arrow below, will appear when the system is deactivated. When this light disappears, the system is active and has been reset. If you are unsure if the system is working, visit your local Toyota dealer.

Can a pre-collision system be added?

Yes, after-market alternatives exist if your vehicle is not equipped with a Pre-Collision System. Most late-model Toyota included Toyota Safety Sense, which has offered PCS as standard equipment since 2016. Except for GR86 and GR Supra, they have a PCS but not under the Toyota Safety Sense.

Note: Always refer to the vehicle’s Owner’s Manual for more detailed information about your specific vehicle. Safe driving practices should always be followed. For more details, contact your local Toyota Dealer or visit

Cedric Jackson

Cedric Jackson

Cedric is a Sales Pro with 20+ years of experience. He is currently a Sales Consultant at Toyota of Riverside. He aims to share his passion for product knowledge of the Toyota brand here on his blog. Cedric writes content here and produces short-form videos on YouTube, Instagram & TicTok. Connect with him here or on all social media @ cedricthecarguy 🙏🏾🤙🏾

Cedric Jackson

Cedric Jackson

Cedric is a Sales Pro with 20+ years of experience. He is currently a Sales Consultant at Toyota of Riverside. He aims to share his passion for product knowledge of the Toyota brand here on his blog. Cedric writes content here and produces short-form videos on YouTube, Instagram & TicTok. Connect with him here or on all social media @ cedricthecarguy 🙏🏾🤙🏾

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