A driver has said he was trapped in his car for 320 miles on a Chinese highway after his cruise control malfunctioned, forcing him to drive until he ran out of fuel.
Named in local reports as Mr. Luo, the man was behind the wheel of a Chinese-built Haval H6 Crossover when driving through the city of Zhuzhou, in Hunan province. Mr Luo said he put the car into cruise control mode, but was unable to cancel it.
It was at that moment that he says he also realised the brakes weren’t working either, according to local media, and he was unable to bring the car to a stop.
News of Mr. Luo’s predicament came as the list of the most unreliable car brands was revealed on Thursday, with Porsche scoring the lowest rating.
A driver has said he was trapped in his car (pictured left in CCTV footage and right in dashcam footage) for 320 miles on a Chinese highway after his cruise control malfunctions, forcing him to drive until he ran out of fuel
Mr. Luo claims he put the SUV – one of the most popular car models in the country – into cruise control, setting the speed to a little over 100kph (62 miles per hour).
However, when he wanted to slow down, he says the car refused to cancel the cruise control setting. At the same time, he says he realised his brakes weren’t working.
As a result of the malfunction, the man was allegedly forced to keep going at the same speed for hundreds of miles, until his car ran out of fuel.
Chinese website AutoHome reported to story, saying the incident happened on December 2. CCTV footage and video from other cars purportedly showed the car cruising down the highway through Zhuzhou.
As he was driving, Mr. Luo phoned local authorities to alert them to his situation.
Police officers provided an escort to ensure the driver’s car did not hit any other vehicles on the highway. But even after Haval engineers from the local region spoke to the driver over the phone, nothing could be done to bring the car to a stop.
The car travelled around 320 miles down the highway before it finally ran out of fuel, meaning it took the car roughly five hours to come to a stop (if travelling at 62kph).
Mr. Luo was the only person in the car during the incident. AutoHome said that as soon as he realised his predicament, he became very upset, fearing for his life.
It remains unknown why the car got stuck in cruise-control mode, with investigations still being carried out by the manufacturer.
Named in local reports as Mr. Luo, the man was behind the wheel of a Chinese-built Haval H6 Crossover (pictured, file photo) when driving through the city of Zhuzhou, in Hunan province
The car travelled around 320 miles down the highway in Zhuzhou (pictured) before it finally ran out of fuel, meaning it took the car roughly five hours to come to a stop
The first generation of the Haval H6 was introduced in 2011, and since October 2015, the five-door SUV has been the best selling SUV in China.
Haval does not sell cars in most western countries, including the UK and the US.
The incident is not the first time a car in China has been reported to gotten stuck in cruise control mode. In 2019, a Chinese driver was forced to speed down a motorway for over 50 miles without being able to control his car.
At the time, driver Mr Xue called the police after realising he was not able to stop his new £55,000 Mercedes-Benz, which was travelling at 75mph (120kmh) in central China, according to Chinese media.
Luckily, Mr Xue is an amateur racer, survived the terrifying ride unscathed after staff from the car brand managed to turn off his cruise control remotely, said reports.
A similar incident happened in the UK in 2016, but sadly, the driver of the car was not as lucky as the two in the Chinese incidents.
Kaushal Gandhi, 32, of Harrow, Middlesex, desperately tried to stop his out-of-control Skoda Octavia before it crashed into a parked lorry, killing him instantly.
Gandhi phoned 999 as his car sped down a motorway at 119mph after the cruise control locked, an inquest later heard.
In the eight minutes leading up to the collision, Mr Gandhi told the call handler that the cruise control had become stuck and he could not stop the car accelerating.
A recording of the panicked phone call was played to a coroner in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire. He told the operator: ‘My car is not coming out of cruise control…It is not letting me stop. It (the speedometer) shows 70mph but I think I am going much faster than this.’ He was advised to try the handbrake, before the crash.
The Skoda crashed into a lorry parked in a lay-by after the M40 merged into the A40 shortly after 3am on February 2, 2016. Mr Gandhi was decapitated.
Robert Hague, a witness who phoned emergency services, told the inquest the car was ‘almost completely embedded in the lorry’ and the roof was ‘peeled back’.