These features will make the car smarter as a commodity.
Cars that drive themselves may still be a good decade away from hitting showrooms, but that doesn’t mean pure science fiction-like features haven’t already made their way into cars on sale today.
In-car tech is more accessible than ever before with numerous luxury car features now seeping into everyday cars. Pushing the envelope, in terms of gizmo wizardry on offer, isn’t all that easy, but here are five futuristic features which are available on cars already on sale.
On long drives or even while driving home after a hard day’s work, your attentiveness behind the wheel drops as fatigue sets in. The technology monitors a number of driver inputs like sudden corrections to the steering, sudden application of brakes and also the distance covered and time spent behind the wheel. This data is analysed and matched with preset signs of a drowsy person behind the wheel and if it thinks you’re feeling sleepy, it will send both a visual and audible prompt for you to take a break.
The Rolls-Royce Wraith, launched in 2013, was the first car to feature Satellite Aided Transmission or SAT. This system uses GPS data to analyse the road ahead, beyond what the driver can see, to always keep the car in the perfect gear, keeping the driving/riding experience as smooth as possible. This technology was developed for Formula 1 racing by Rolls-Royce’s parent, BMW, which calls it ‘Predictive Gear Shift Technology’. It’s currently available in the BMW 7 Series (Europe) as well.
If you thought charging mobile phones wirelessly was a cool innovation, wait till you watch the upcoming Audi A8 E-Tron charge itself wirelessly using a floor-mounted charger! As you get closer to the charging spot, the car can guide you until it’s exactly on top of it. The charger detects the car’s presence and rises to get closer to the inductive charging area. It retracts when the car is fully juiced up or if the key fob is detected inside the cabin.
If you don’t want to be bothered with parking your car yourself or find yourself stuck in a hard spot, worry not! You can use your key fob to park your car, as long as it is the new BMW 7 Series. This is a unique experience and something straight out of a James Bond film. But unlike Pierce Brosnan, who drives through a complete car chase with a remote, you can only reverse straight into or drive straight out of a parking space. Pretty cool, eh?
Radar-guided cruise control
Cruise control on its own is a handy feature for driving on the highway. When you combine this feature with forward-facing radar technology, it takes convenience to a whole new level. Adaptive cruise control works by virtually latching onto the car in front. The car automatically ensures that you keep up with and stay a safe distance away from the car ahead. It also mirrors the speed of the vehicle in front, slowing down and speeding up when needed allowing you to literally take your feet off the pedals.
— by Zigwheels.com