Adaptive cruise control systems work well on highways. Once you get into town, though, they're less helpful -- and a lot of that has to do with traffic lights. Current systems don't recognize them, resulting in drivers running a red, putting themselves and everyone else on the road in danger. Also, the authorities frown on that sort of behavior. Instead of using data from the traffic lights themselves, BMW is using the two cameras mounted on the front of the car to recognize the state of a traffic signal. Because the layout of traffic lights has been standardized internationally both vertically and horizontally, the system should work in most markets. To help navigate tricky intersections with more than four roads meeting, and where multiple lights might be visible to the system, the cruise control feature uses map data to get a fix on the car's position. That helps it determine which signal it needs to pay attention to.