5 Major Milestones in Automotive Technology

by Modis on June 1, 2017

automotive technology in actionFor more than 130 years, the ongoing evolution of the automotive industry has mainly been driven by one thing: advancements in technology. What are the major milestone changes the industry has seen throughout it’s lifetime so far?

From the 1885 invention of the first gasoline-powered vehicle by Karl Benz in Germany, car manufacturers the world over have been delivering transformations and advances that mean the latest versions to hit the roads bear very little resemblance to the earliest models that enabled us to motor. These are some of the more recent milestones that have been reached as the digital revolution accelerates the rate of change.

Green Technology

Electric vehicles have probably been the biggest green technology advancement the industry has seen so far. Recycling of parts is now a huge endeavor and the use of robots combined with the Internet of Things means the manufacturing process has become much more energy efficient. Where will green technology go next? Advances in battery storage for electric cars mean that Chevrolet has recently introduced the Bolt EV, a pure electric vehicle that gets more than 200 miles per charge.

Driving Assistance

Driving assistance technologies have come a long way from power steering and cruise control You can get assistance with braking, parking, speed control, descending steep hills and even staying awake at the wheel. Audi’s demonstration shows a car parking itself!

Self-driving Cars

The next-step on from cars that assist you is cars that do it all for you. According to Forbes, there will be 10 million self-driving cars on the road by 2020. So how is technology making this possible? It’s all to do with connectivity, sensors and software algorithms. Early leaders in the self-driving car race are Google, who is working on its Waymo version that has no steering wheel and no pedals; and Tesla’s Autopilot product, an interim step, which can be uploaded to existing vehicles through a software update. Here it is in action.

WiFi Hotspots

Cars with built-in 4G connectivity are now becoming commonplace and they allow several devices to be connected at a time. Great for passengers that want chat on social media or watch movies online, but also good for keeping up-to-date with traffic news and the weather.Carwow made a list of the best WiFi-enabled cars available to buy now.

Crash-control Chatting

Connectivity in cars will extend beyond getting online and enable cars to talk to each other to avoid collisions. In this interview, Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors said: “V2V, or vehicle-to-vehicle communication, allows cars to communicate with each other over a dedicated Wi-Fi band and share information about vehicle speed, direction of travel, traffic flow, and road and weather conditions. If a car makes a sudden stop or is in danger of colliding with another vehicle, every car around it will know this within a fraction of a second. V2V can detect vehicles that are around corners, over hills or otherwise hidden from a driver’s view. ”

So, some of these milestones have been passed and others are just about to be reached. Interested to know what even further in the future might bring? Here’s a selection of concept cars from some of the industry’s top players.

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