10th December 2014
Due to the time it takes to get a car to market, through R&D, design styling, market analysis pre-manufacture, safety testing and finally manufacturing and distribution, the internet generation has moved on a step so automotive technology always appears one step behind. A sentiment widely acknowledged by the automotive industry. However huge advances are in store between now and 2020.
If you have ever been sitting in traffic and wished you didn’t have to be behind the controls then you will be pleased to know that self-driving cars are heading your way by 2020. You will most likely have the ability to platoon with other cars traveling in the same direction at the same speed to avoid traffic snaking. Perhaps as exciting as it is scary. Research, however, suggests we’re hungry for this, driven by a desire for shorter commute times, reduced traffic related variability and the freedom to switch in or out of the self driving mode.
Six years really isn’t that far away but between now and then we’re likely to experience other advances, some intermediary, others revolutionary. To list a few, laser headlights for better vision, digital goods such as updates and applications for enhanced in-car entertainment, holographic dashboards more advanced than our trusty tablets and finally in-car Wi-Fi for continued connectivity. The latter makes possible a whole new concept of connected vehicles, allowing cars to protect passengers from blind spots; drivers who’ve overrun red lights and avoid traffic jams by plotting alternate routes around incidents based on live data.
Get ready for Vehicle to Vehicle (V2V), which uses wireless and satelite to map vehicle location and proximity utilising algorithms to calculate accident avoidance technology linked to acceleration and braking. This technology is claimed can reduce 79% of accidents. Then there’s V2I: Vehicle to Infrastructure where you vehicle can communicate with road signs and traffic signals or a broader traffic management system and centrally controlled telematics.
If you visit such tech towns as Mountain View in California you will get a taste of the future, where every other car is a Tesla, Nissan Leaf or Toyota Prius. Electric and hybrid cars are on the brink for delivering ecological change benefits to all of us. But we are yet to see whether electric or hydrogen cars will win out or better still: cars powered by fresh air!
Jeremy Bliss is a top Silver Account Manager who is mad on cars and extreme off-road biking, when he is not planning the next award winning European strategic marketing campaign.