A little over a year ago, we talked about how new technology was disrupting the automotive industry, noting the tech that we thought was the future of driving. A lot has changed in one year! It’s more than just a full suite of airbags and backup cameras these days. Below, we have compiled a new list of intriguing and emerging auto technologies that will wow you. If you’re looking for a way to break into the lucrative automobile market, these areas of growth may be your next entry point.
- Mobile app integration
It’s hard to imagine a time without a smartphone and car manufacturers have finally gotten the hint that they need to better support app integration. If you’re looking for a new company car or even just something for personal use, look for a car that offers an app that allows you to remotely lock or unlock your car doors. There are also tons of apps that can measure fuel and send you tire pressure warnings. And for the truly needy, you can even set your car’s temperature to warm up the interior on those frosty, wintry mornings.
But remember, there are often subscription fees so make sure you ask about those before blindly signing up.
- Stolen car tech
Sometimes, the worst-case-scenario does indeed happen. But automakers are learning that they can help curb this crime. More than 750,000 vehicles will be stolen in 2019 according to some estimates. The worst part of that stat? Only around 46 percent will actually be recovered and returned to the owner. Even with car insurance, that can be pretty crippling for a business that is reliant on a car fleet. However, that number may see an upward trend of recovered vehicles thank to tracking technology embedded in some new car models.
This tech is usually integrated with other types of security systems like GM’s OnStar service. While some features like accident-notifications and accident concierge already exist, these services are now also able to tell law enforcement where the vehicle is.
- Music apps
Is there anything more annoying than driving and suddenly, a song you absolutely hate comes on? Whether it’s a Justin Bieber or Taylor Swift song, you can easily get to a less cringe-inducing tune with apps like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Billed as “infotainment” systems, these clever programs control your AC, navigation, and, of course, your music. You’ll have a simple way to control your music apps that don’t result in undue distraction while driving.
- Teen driver monitoring
As much as you might trust your teen with your used Mercedes in Pembroke Pines or an old Volkswagen in Santa Fe, it doesn’t matter your hometown – teen drivers just aren’t that experienced and don’t always know what they’re doing. Luckily, automakers are delivering peace-of-mind to worried parents with driver monitoring everywhere who have reluctantly handed the keys of a trusty family beater into the hands of a high-schooler.
Some models will send you alerts if the car is driven over a certain speed or the stereo will be completely disabled if seatbelts aren’t in use. When you send your kids off to drive on the open road, it can be a little nerve-wracking, but these kinds of tech systems help keep you from getting too many premature gray hairs.
- Cyclist protection
You’ve probably been in this scenario before: you’ve paralleled parked on the road and you go to open the door but right before you swing it open, a Lance-Armstrong type whizzes past you on his bike. Close call! Luckily, car makers have started implementing exit warnings that alert you to unexpected cyclists and other dangers that occur on the open road as you leave the car.
- Rear cross-traffic warnings
If you’ve ever backed out in a busy parking lot, you know how scary it can be to just rely on your sight alone. After all, sometimes you can’t see hapless pedestrians that aren’t paying attention, or an errant shopping cart just hidden from view. That’s where rear cross-traffic alerts come in, they serve as your eyes for situations where you can’t see around the corner or in a stressful situation like a busy parking lot where your attention is constantly diverted. On top of that, FMEA software has become so good at predicting dangerous situations like this that you can often rely on your car to help you avoid them altogether!
As a whole, the automotive industry is getting a lot safer thanks to new kinds of safety technology. When you head to the dealership to shop for a new car, you should look for some of these safety features in this list. While these protective technologies may not save you from a car crash, they will give you peace-of-mind and may help you avoid unnecessary collisions.