What is Subaru DriverFocus Technology?

Jessica Choksey | Jun 25, 2020

Distracted driving remains an important issue in passenger vehicle safety, and car manufacturers have been steadfast in the development of technologies that help drivers stay attentive to the road. The Subaru DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation System (DMS) is one such technology designed to do exactly what its name suggests.

Subaru Forester with DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation System

How Does Subaru DriverFocus Work?  - Find the best Subaru deals!

Unlike the majority of driver monitoring systems which are based on evaluating changes in driving behavior, Subaru DriverFocus uses facial recognition technology that evaluates changes in the driver’s eye and head movements. The technology uses a camera integrated into a module at the top of the dashboard. While you’re on the road, DriverFocus actively monitors the driver for signs of distraction, drowsiness, and fatigue by reading biometrics such as eye and facial movements. 

A driver taking their eyes off the road for more than three seconds will receive a visual and audible warning from the vehicle. If the warning goes ignored, the vehicle will begin to slow itself and even come to a full stop. If the driver continues to remain unresponsive, the system will call for help from emergency responders by using Subaru’s Starlink connected services technology.

DriverFocus Recognizes up to Five Drivers  - Find the best Subaru deals!

In addition to monitoring a driver for distraction or a medical emergency, DriverFocus is integrated with a Subaru’s available driver memory settings. When one of five drivers with a completed profile in the system gets into the driver’s seat, DriverFocus identifies and recognizes the driver and automatically adjusts the seat position, side mirror angles, and climate settings to that person’s preferences.

To set it up, you’ll need to create individual profiles for each driver and have the system perform a full facial scan that requires the person to turn their head from shoulder to shoulder. Once registered as one of the Subaru’s five primary drivers, the camera will identify that person by measuring facial features, such as distances between the eyes, mouth, and nose.

Can I Turn off Subaru DriverFocus? - Find the best Subaru deals!

DriverFocus is available on various models across Subaru’s vehicle lineup, typically as part of a higher trim level’s standard equipment. The system does not record any video or images of real-time driving. With that said, if this technology represents too much Big Brother-style monitoring for you, don’t let its presence dissuade you from getting a top-of-the-line Subaru. You can deactivate DriverFocus with the touch of a button.

The Subaru DriverFocus system is designed to elevate overall passenger vehicle safety, especially when utilized alongside the automaker’s wide array of EyeSight driver-assist features. Subaru claims the DriverFocus system was the first of its kind when it introduced the technology in the redesigned 2019 Forester and it remains among only a few such systems across the automotive industry that uses facial recognition programming to monitor drivers.

The information in this article is from Subaru. It was accurate on June 25, 2020 but may have changed since that date.

Explore new car previews
2023 Ford F-Series Super Duty Preview
2023 Ford F-Series Super Duty Preview
F-Series Super Duty trucks got what they needed for the 2023 model year. Ford announced a more powerful line of heavy-duty trucks with a load of available new tech, great standard safety features, and unique upfits to make the trucks more appropriate for specific industries.
Read the full review
2023 Honda Pilot Preview
2023 Honda Pilot Preview
The fourth-generation 2023 Honda Pilot is about to go on sale, and Honda substantially upgrades it over the popular third-generation model it replaces. Honda will offer the redesigned 2023 Pilot in Sport, EX-L, TrailSport, Touring, and Elite trim levels in December 2022.
Read the full review
2023 Ram 2500 Heavy Duty Rebel Preview
2023 Ram 2500 Heavy Duty Rebel Preview
Ram used the 2022 State Fair of Texas to show off its new 2500 Heavy Duty Rebel, a beefy off-road truck that retains its work-truck capabilities. It brings hardcore off-road upgrades such as an electronic-locking rear differential and a rear limited-slip differential.
Read the full review
Read all articles

Scroll to the top
New Car Preview
2023 Lexus RZ Preview
Most Dependable
2019 Vehicle Dependability: Most Dependable Family Cars
Most Popular
10 Most Popular Large Cars and Minivans
New Model Update
New for 2019: Dodge
New Car Preview
2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Preview
More related