New Car Technologies That Truly Have a Chance

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Future Car Technologies is something which may change and create a great boom in market. Now companies are moving towards automation and robotics technology to ease the human efforts. Let’s focus on some upcoming car technologies…

1. Augmented Reality Dashboards

GPS and other in-car displays are great for getting us from point A to point B, and some high-end vehicles even have displays on the windshield, but in the near future cars will be able to identify external objects in front of the driver and display information about them on the windshield.

Think of the Terminator, or many other science fiction stories, where a robot looks at a person or an object and automatically brings up information about them and can identify who or what they are. Augmented Reality dashboards, AR for short, will function in a similar way for drivers. BMW has already implemented a windshield display in some of their vehicles which displays basic information, but they’re also developing augmented reality dashboards that will be able to identify objects in front a vehicle and tell the driver how far they are away from the object. The AR display will overlay information on top of what a driver is seeing in real life.

BMW is also researching the use of augmented reality for automotive technicians. They produced a video where a BMW technician uses AR glasses to look at an engine, identify what parts need to be replaced and then shows step-by-step instructions on how to fix it.
Augmented reality may not be here yet, but if these car companies have their way, we’ll be seeing it in our future cars a little ways down the road.

2. Airbags That Help Stop Cars

Ever since airbags were been added to vehicles, they’ve continued to make their way around the inside of our vehicles. We now have curtain airbags, side airbags, knee airbags, seat belts airbags and even ones that deploy under us. Maybe all of us don’t have them in our cars, but they’re on the road. And Mercedes is working on a new way to use airbags that moves them away from a passive safety measure and makes it part of an active safety system.

Mercedes is experimenting with airbags that deploy from underneath the car that will help stop a vehicle before a crash. The airbags are part of the overall active safety system and deploy when sensors determine that at impact is inevitable. The bags have a friction coating that helps slow the car down and can double the stopping power of the vehicle. The bags also lift the vehicle up to eight centimeters, which counters the car’s dipping motion during hard braking, improves bumper-to-bumper contact and helps prevent passengers from sliding under seat belts during a collision.

3. Energy-storing Body Panels

Exxon Mobil predicts that by 2040, half of all new cars coming off the production line will be hybrids [source: Kahn]. That’s great news for the environment, but one of the problems with hybrids is that the batteries take up a lot of space and are very heavy. Even with advances in lithium-ion batteries, hybrids have a significant amount of weight from their batteries. That’s where energy-storing body panels come in.

In Europe, a group of nine auto manufacturers are currently researching and testing body panels that can store energy and charge faster than conventional batteries of today. The body panels being tested are made of polymer fiber and carbon resin that are strong enough to be used in vehicles and pliable enough to be molded into panels. These panels could reduce a car’s weight by up to 15 percent [source: Volvo].

The panels would capture energy produced by technologies like regenerative braking or when the car is plugged in overnight and then feed that energy back to the car when it’s needed [source: Volvo]. Not only would this help reduce the size of hybrid batteries, but the extra savings in weight would eliminate wasted energy used to move the weight from the batteries.

4. Start the Countdown

In the technology world, the latest advancement is only as good as the next thing coming down the line. The auto industry is constantly bringing us new technologies, whether it be for safety, entertainment, usefulness or simply for pure innovation.

Many new car technologies are either specifically built for safety or at least have some sort of safety focus to them. Some of the latest car innovations we’ve found are some truly exciting technologies that could revolutionize not just the automotive industry but human transportation in general.

So what’s in store for future cars? Well, we don’t know for sure, but based on what’s currently being tested and what’s on the road today, we have an idea of some new technology that will most likely make it into production. Some of it will help keep us safe, some will give us information like never before and some will let us kick back and just enjoy the ride.

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