New Innovative Car Features
The world of cars and the automotive industry is one of
constant change, growth, and technological evolution. Think about it; we’ve gone from carburetors
to fuel injection and from fuel injection to DFI. Generators were replaced
with alternators, coil packs and DIS replaced distributors, and those old, rear
drum brakes are a thing of the past thanks to rear disc brakes. Have you stopped and thought about
solar-powered vehicles and Hybrids? How
advanced is the technology for those? Now, there have even been several tested
prototypes and concepts for flying cars!
Every year, the automotive world amazes and embraces us with a new
Have you taken a look at some of the aftermarket stereo
systems available for cars today!?
Stereos are fitted with television screens, USB ports, remote controls,
touch-screen capabilities, compatible for playing DVD and/or CDs, and let’s not
forget their streaming capabilities like XM,
Sirius, and Pandora—absolutely incredible! Even the tires and rims on cars have
changed dramatically over time.
Remember, in the ol’ days, Rally tires were the thing to have!? Not
anymore, we’ve graduated to the fancy, custom, chrome rims and rubberband-thin
low-profile tires. Look at all the
different design patterns and types of custom, chrome rims available today—some
of them are even painted or equipped with colorful ‘inserts’ that further enhance their appeal—and who can forget ‘Spinners’?—Those were insane! Well,
today, we’ll look at more innovative features of today’s cars.
Perhaps one of the biggest innovative we’ve seen more
recently in cars today that’s spreading like wildfire is the new Park Assist feature. Remember how everyone hated the parallel
parking portion of your road test for your driver’s license? Remember how everyone still hates to parallel
park today, no matter how long you’ve been driving? And remember how we all used to say we wish
the used car could just parallel park itself?
Yeah, well, um—now it can.
Park Assist, IPAS (Intelligent Parking Assist System),
or APGS (Advanced Parking Guidance
System), as it’s commonly referred today, allows the car to actually steer
itself in parallel parking using an in-dash video screen, and through a series
of cameras, sensors, and a drop of information from the driver. While this truly innovative feature has seen
recent success and positive feedback; it isn’t as new as most consumers would
think—Park Assist has actually existed for more than 10 years, 12 years to be
headquarters to Toyota, was the first
to develop and employ the Park Assist feature and technology via their 2003 Prius. Then,
in 2006, an updated version was unveiled to a small market outside of Japan for
the first time—no, the U.S. was not
included in that small market. Finally, in 2009, the United States and
other parts of Europe and Asia were allowed in on the secret. Today,
major automakers such as Ford, Mazda, and Dodge, all utilize the Park Assist feature in their vehicles.
No, this isn’t
something from Call of Duty, but you
can say the automotive industry has definitely learned something from the
military. Not only have they learned
from it, they’ve also implemented it into their vehicles. Much like the Park Assist feature, this
technology isn’t necessarily new; it’s just now becoming well-known,
advertised, and accepted by and to the public.
engineered the Night Vision feature in 2000, then, in 2005 and 2010, Mercedes improved it and offered it the E-Class.
It was also available in the 2009
BMW 7-Series. The Night Vision
feature marks an approaching pedestrian in red on an in-dash monitor. If the car gets too close to the pedestrian,
a second indication and/or alarm will flash on a Heads-Up display equipped
within the vehicle’s front windshield.
Pretty cool, huh!?
Okay, you can’t
say you didn’t see this one coming, especially with all the technological
advances the automotive world has spewed out within the last 5 to 10 years—this
was only a matter of time. This one is
pretty cut-and-dry. Autonet Mobile, the first network of its kind, allows your car to
become a ‘hotspot’ by mounting a
router in a secured and discreet location within your car. It allows 3G internet access with no regards
to cell towers or tunnels. Ford and
Chrysler have already jumped on this feature with their UConnect Web and Ford Works
Solutions Systems as they, like the rest of us, highly anticipate the
arrival of full-fledged internet and web-surfing capabilities from a car.