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MIT Names V2V Communication Top 10 Breakthrough Technology

Ability to ease congestion, cut traffic deaths cited.

by on Feb.26, 2015

Vehicle-to-vehicle communication systems that make driving safer were named as a breakthrough technology by MIT.

MIT Technology Review named Vehicle-to-vehicle communication, a much-discussed idea in the auto industry, one of the 10 Breakthrough Technologies for 2015.

Each year, MIT and Technology identify technologies from the past year that solve difficult problems or create powerful new ways of using technology to make the world better.

We Keep You Plugged In!

The V2V communications technology allows vehicles to communicate with other vehicles and is considered by advocates as a solution to reducing the slow traffic on increasingly crowded roads and freeways and to cutting traffic injuries and fatalities. (more…)

Mileage Still Critical to Shoppers, Despite Plunging Prices

Technology, exterior and interior design, also critical, finds Power study.

by on Jan.19, 2015

Power's Avoiders study warns that motorists still won't pay a stiff premium for alternative power models like the new 2016 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid.

With gas prices down below $2 a gallon in most of the country, there’s been a surge of demand for pickups and other big vehicles. Even so, fuel economy remains the key factor most motorists consider when buying a new car, truck of crossover, according to a new survey by J.D. Power and Associates.

But even the highest-mileage vehicles may not connect with buyers turned off by poor design or by the lack of the latest technological features, notes Power’s 2015 U.S. Avoiders Study. The annual report looks at both what motivates motorists to buy, reject or avoid particular models.

Consumer Insight!

For the fourth year in a row, it turns out, fuel economy has remained the most influential factor in choosing a new vehicle. According to the 2015 study, 14% of shoppers listed mileage as number one on the list of why they bought a particular vehicle, while 16% said they rejected a vehicle because of its poor mileage.


Makers Counting on Tech Sector to Help Make Safer, More Interactive Cars

Connected car technology continues improvement.

by on Nov.19, 2014

Wolfgang Epple, director of Research and Technology at Jaguar Land Rover, shows how the company's new technology displays and implements apps.

New technology that is being refined continuously now has the potential to make driving safer and more fun, while bringing the automobile business closer to the ever-blooming consumer electronics industry, executives from Volvo, Jaguar Land Rover and Audi said during the “Connected Car” expo that opened ahead of the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show.

As evidence of that growing relationship, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is opening its $3 million Open Software Technology Center. The facility will focus on the development and application of advanced connected technologies and help lead the development of future Jaguar and Land Rover infotainment systems, according to Wolfgang Epple, director of Research and Technology, Jaguar Land Rover

Auto Show News!

The new technical center, the only JLR research center outside Great Britain, was located on the West Coast to development infotainment systems for all Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles. (more…)

Component Costs Deter Implementation of Driverless Technology

Sensor prices too high for automakers to use on massive scale.

by on Sep.10, 2014

Sensor prices for autonomous driving are too high for widespread use. This lidar sensor, which fits in the palm of your hand, starts at $8,000.

Cars loaded with the technology that allows them to drive themselves have been cruising the streets of downtown Detroit this week, but unless the costs of a critical component come down dramatically, don’t expect them to be in showrooms any time soon.

Self-driving or autonomous cars currently rely on several sensors to help perform the functions of driving. However, the sensors are expensive and are not developed specifically for cars and trucks, but adapted and modified from other areas.

Your Inside Source!

“The cost of sensing and processing is going to have to move down a lot if we’re going to make a manageable and a large-scale deployment of autonomous automated vehicle technology over the next few years,” said John Lauckner, General Motors’ chief technology officer, during a recent forum at the ITS World Congress in Detroit. (more…)

Latest in Driver Safety Technology Coming to Detroit

Makers, suppliers and tech companies demonstrating latest wares.

by on Sep.05, 2014

Collision avoidance systems improve safety for individual vehicles, and will be just one form of safety technology on display in Detroit next week.

Toyota’s announcement yesterday of its goal of zero highway deaths related to its vehicles was one of several made by automakers recently about new safety technology coming to vehicles, which makes the timing of the 21st Intelligent Transport Systems World Congress in Detroit next week perfect.

Major carmakers, suppliers and other technology companies will display some of the latest technical advances that promise to curb deaths, injuries and traffic jams.

Your Inside Source!

With growing interest in driver assistance system, automated driving and intelligent highways that can make roads safer not only for motorists but also for pedestrians and bicyclists and wider use of smart technology linked to wireless systems. (more…)

Continental Ups the Autonomous Car Ante

Supplier hires Google exec for smart car company.

by on Aug.18, 2014

Continental hired former Google exec, Seval Oz, to oversee its new intelligent transportation systems company in Silicon Valley.

The race is on to be first to market with a fully autonomous vehicle. Right now, automakers like Nissan, General Motors and Mercedes-Benz are being challenged by high-tech upstart Google, which plans to launch a fleet of autonomous prototypes later this year.

One of the key figures in Google’s self driving program has been poached by German auto supplier, which itself hopes to become a leader in autonomous technology. German auto supplier Continental is going all in on intelligent driving systems by forming a new company, Continental Intelligent Transportation Systems LLC, located in Silicon Valley.

Auto Insight!

Continental, which supplies driver assistance technology, such as blind-spot detection, hired Seval Oz to be CEO of the new company. Oz previously served as Senior Business Development manager at Google, where she was integral in the development of the self-driving car. (more…)

Buyers Looking for Safety Help on Future Vehicles

Lane drift warning among most desired new options, survey says.

by on Jul.23, 2014

Auto Pacific's new FADS survey shows an increase in drivers wanting advanced safety systems on vehicles.

While a self-driving car may be in our future, for now drivers just want for some additional safety help as they’re motoring along America’s highways and byways, according to a new study.

The top desired features showing the largest growth are lane drift warning systems and backup collision intervention, backup cameras and drowsy driver monitoring systems.

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The lane drift warning was the biggest riser in Auto Pacific’s annual Future Attribute Demand Study (FADS). The demand jumped 26% from 2013 to 2014, the company said. (more…)

Slap Those Wipers!

Detroit inventor has help on snowy mornings.

by on Mar.14, 2014

A Detroit-area company has come up with the Motor City Wiper that helps eliminate the build up of ice and snow on wipers.

If you’ve ever had to scrape the snow and ice off your windshield on a cold winter morn – and it seems like everyone outside Southern California has faced that problem this year, you may want to root for a small Detroit start-up that thinks it has a better idea.

Windshield wipers are one of those automotive components most of don’t think much about – until we need them. And when they’re covered with ice that we have to crack off, Motor City Wiper’s solution could be a godsend. They actually smack themselves against your windshield to break off the icy crust without having to grab them manually.

Product News!

Could these be the next big breakthrough after the development of the intermittent windshield wiper? The little Detroit firm is hoping so and is hunting around for both financial support and customers – though it reportedly hasn’t generated a lot of interest from automotive manufacturers. That’s no surprise, as it took years for Robert Kearns, the inventor who came up with the most effective intermittent wiper system to see his product gain traction. (more…)

Show-goers Find Plenty Cool Tech at 2014 Auto Show

Motorists find ways to stay connected, improve safety, boost mileage.

by on Jan.24, 2014

The latest Honda Link not only accesses smartphone music apps, but even displays a new navi app on the LCD screen of the new 2015 Honda Fit.

This year’s North American International Auto Show is flirting with record attendance levels despite the intense cold that has settled over the Motor City – and that may be because show-goers have plenty of cool stuff to check out into Detroit’s sprawling Cobo Center convention hall.

There are 100s of new cars, trucks, crossovers and concept vehicles on display – including more than 50 vehicles making their debut at the 2014 NAIAS.  But for many of the visitors who’ve slogged through snow and temperatures dipping at times below zero, the big draw are the new performance, safety and infotainment features rapidly transforming the automobile into a technological showcase.

Keep on Truckin'!

This year’s Detroit auto show follows the big Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, and there are some notable similarities – no surprise, suggests Art St. Cyr, the head of American Honda’s automotive operations, since for many buyers, “the single most-important technology is their cellphone. They don’t want to be disconnected.”

That’s an observation more and more automakers are taking to heart.  Among the coolest new automotive technologies, many allow motorists to pair the car with their smartphones, tablets, laptop computers and other digital devices.


Democratizing Technology

Features once limited to luxury models increasingly commonplace in mainstream vehicles.

by on Sep.16, 2013

All 2014 Toyota Corolla models will offer energy-efficient LED headlamps, a first for the segment.

When the new 2014 Dodge Durango comes to market later this month, it will offer buyers an assortment of new safety features that include Adaptive Cruise Control, a system that quickly can bring the vehicle to a complete stop in heavy traffic, then start moving again when traffic clears.

The 2014 Chevrolet Impala has a similar system that can slam on the brakes in an emergency, helping avoid an accident the driver might not have time to react to.  Meanwhile, Toyota will make super-bright and energy-efficient LED headlamps standard on all versions of the all-new 2014 Corolla sedan.

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These and other features, such as the EyeSight system Subaru is rolling out across its model line-up, underscore a dramatic trend in the auto industry, what might best be called “the democratization of technology,” in the words of Ford Motor Co. Chief Operating Officer Mark Fields.