Will This Car Tech Shape The Future Of The Automotive Industry?

Will This Car Tech Shape The Future Of The Automotive Industry?

Look no further than cars if you’re interested in the latest technological developments. It definitely feels like the automotive industry sees some of the best advancements in technology. What’s interesting is that many of the advancements and tech implementations have a trickle-down effect. They start in high-level motorsport – like Formula 1 – and gradually find their way to everyday motor vehicles. 

The topic of today’s discussion is car technology that will shape the future of this industry. Some of the things we’ll talk about are obvious, while others may take you by surprise. 

Electric Vehicles

We can’t talk about car technology without mentioning electric vehicles. Governments around the world are introducing legislation to push forward the electric car revolution. Expect to see more and more EVs on the roads within the next decade. Things are already heating up, but more investment must be put into the infrastructure for EVs to truly take over. 

Clearly, there are many benefits to driving an electric vehicle. The obvious one is that you produce zero carbon emissions. EVs are also arguably safer than combustion engine cars because of a lack of internal parts. This means there are fewer things that can go bust, leading to a decreased likelihood of repairs. Still, there are elements of electric cars that many people don’t like – but we’ll touch on that later on. 

Autonomous Driving

Autonomous driving is another one of the “obvious” car technologies to discuss. For those that don’t know, this basically refers to self-driving cars. We’re seeing some implementations of this technology already, at different levels. Many of the cars we drive today will include some type of autonomous driving feature. This could be as simple as cruise control or assisted parking. In some cars, most famously Teslas, you can actually make the car drive itself for a period. 

This technology is expected to revolutionize the auto industry – but is it really necessary? What are the benefits of cars that drive themselves? In theory, if every car was autonomous, you’d see fewer accidents as you remove human error and silly drivers from the equation. You may also see less traffic as cars can be programmed to take the most efficient routes possible – though that remains to be seen. 

From an accessibility standpoint, autonomous driving is ideal for individuals that cannot or aren’t allowed to drive. People with certain disabilities – or elderly people – can be more independent. While they aren’t capable of driving, they can still own a car and get around without relying on others. 

It’s interesting to see how far the industry can push the whole self-driving thing. There are still so many questions surrounding this technology. For example, who is responsible for a crash? Is it the owner of the self-driving vehicle or the manufacturer?

Will This Car Tech Shape The Future Of The Automotive Industry?

Sustainable Fuels

Talking about technology that will shape the future, we have to discuss sustainable fuels. This includes a whole host of fuel types that can be used again and again. Common sustainable fuels include biofuels like hydrotreated vegetable oil or bioethanol. It’s believed that these fuels have the ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions as effectively as electric vehicles. 

While EV technology is right here, right now, sustainable fuels are still a few years away. In fact, we’re seeing it come into implementation in Formula 1 over the next few years. The powers that be are trying to make this motorsport Net Zero Carbon by 2030. Sustainable fuel technology will play a huge role in this as they don’t want to make F1 cars 100% electric. If you’re wondering why it’s because there’s already a 100% electric motorsport in Formula E. 

When this starts being rolled out in Formula 1, it’ll probably be a few years before we see it in road cars. Still, it’s a highly exciting technology that offers an alternative to electric cars. As mentioned before, there are some drawbacks to EVs that many people don’t like. Most notably, waiting for your car to charge. Sustainable fuels remove this issue while still helping the planet. People also dislike how quiet electric vehicles are. You lose the gritty sound of an engine, which is part of the pleasure of driving. With biofuels, you still get the roar of an engine through a meaty dual exhaust system. It allows car fanatics to enjoy the typical driving experience without worrying about pollution. 

Digital Mirrors

Car mirrors are always important for safety purposes. Without them, you wouldn’t see what was happening behind you. As such, lots of accidents would be caused. However, there are issues with mirrors that technology can improve. Specifically, a mirror can only show so much. This causes us to have blind spots that vehicles, pedestrians, or cyclists can slip into without us knowing. Moreover, mirrors don’t always paint the clearest picture – they can be smudged, dirty, or just lack the vision to show a deeper field of view. 

Consequently, we’re seeing the implementation of digital mirrors. This is a really interesting idea that you didn’t think was needed, but after seeing it in action, you agree that it’s potentially revolutionary. Instead of traditional mirrors, you have cameras on the side and rear of your car that show constant footage to screens inside the cockpit. They’re placed just inside the doors where you might naturally look in your side mirrors. The difference is that you constantly get clear vision – and you’re able to see more of the road behind you. A similar technology is used for the rear-view camera, which can basically eliminate any blind spots. 

Some cars are already using this tech, but it’s still under development and needs to be refined. There are a few worries – for instance, what if it rains or the cameras get dirty? Surely your view is then obstructed? Companies are working to prevent this by protecting the cameras and ensuring they still offer a clear view when it’s wet and rainy. This technology is definitely worth getting excited about as it makes driving easier and safer for all road users. 

Will This Car Tech Shape The Future Of The Automotive Industry?

Smart Lighting

You might read this and instantly make a connection with smart lighting in the home. Indeed, we’re seeing smart lights crop up all the time. In your house, smart lights are controlled via apps and let you improve the functionality of the humble light bulb. In a car, smart lighting is fundamentally different – and way more impressive. 

Is there anything worse than driving along at night and constantly having to switch your lights off full-beam when there’s an oncoming driver? It’s even worse when they don’t offer the same courtesy, leaving you momentarily blinded. Smart lighting looks to directly counter this problem. Instead of needing to manually change your lights depending on the setting, they do it for you. 

Yes, this will mean that your lights go on full-beam when it’s dark or foggy without you needing to do anything. When another driver appears ahead of you, the lights automatically tone themselves down to avoid dazzling them. It’s a really fascinating technological advancement that makes your life much easier. Basically, you have one less thing to worry about. Again, it also improves driver safety, which is a running theme with many tech advancements in this industry. 

Smart Tires

Sticking with smart technology, smart tires are soon to be a thing. How can a tire be smart? Well, it turns out there are two different ways this is possible. 

Firstly, you have smart tires that feed information to drivers about things like tire pressure or tread depth. This lets you stay in control and learn when you need to swap tires or top up the pressure before it gets dangerous. It may seem like a tiny feature, but this could actually save you a fortune and make your car much safer. Driving with worn tires increases fuel consumption and boosts the chances of something becoming damaged and requiring costly repairs. The same goes for tires at the incorrect pressure – both of which also have a heightened chance of causing accidents. 

The second type of smart tire is one that works with wheels depending on road conditions. Tire width and pressure are automatically altered based on if you’re driving on wet or dry roads. In theory, it should provide the optimal tire settings whenever you drive. Of all the car tech we’ve mentioned, this is the most intriguing. Some of the earliest implementations of these tires have settings for dry, wet, and slippery road surfaces. It remains to be seen if this technology will actually work in the long term as it’s still very new. Hopefully it does as it’s really cool! 

On that note, you’ve reached the end of this post. As mentioned in the intro, some of the technology here is obvious. You’ve no doubt heard of electric vehicles and autonomous driving many times before. But, were you aware of things like sustainable fuels, digital cameras, smart lights, and smart tires? These are the sort of advancements that slip under the radar yet may play a pivotal role in shaping the future of the automotive industry. 

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