Today is an exciting time to buy a new vehicle. With the advance of smart and wireless technology, new cars and trucks are equipped with a lot of cool and useful gadgets and features that make driving more exciting — and safer! — than ever.
In fact, there are so many new technologies that you can find in new vehicles today that it can be hard to figure out which ones you want. And what’s even better, there are more cool car technologies coming out every year. So here’s a quick guide to a few of these technologies that you can look for the next time you’re ready to purchase a vehicle, whether it’s today or two years from now.
It may seem like a feature that’s still far in the future, but there are a lot of car models nowadays that have the technology to park themselves.This is a great feature for people who aren’t so good at parallel parking and find that every open spot in their town just happens to be right along a curb.
Automatic parking technology uses cameras that are mounted on the sides, front and rear of your vehicle to navigate into an open parking spot. All you have to do is pull up next the car that’s in front of the spot you want and press a button to let the car do the rest. You still need to switch the car from drive to reverse and work the brake pedals, but everything else — the steering and the gas — is controlled by the car.
Lane and Blind Spot Monitoring
These are other technologies that utilize cameras and sensors that are built into the sides of the vehicle. Lane and blind spot monitor are great safety features, especially in today’s world where — try as hard as you can — it’s still easy to get a little distracted while you’re driving.
Lane monitoring technology uses the markings on the roads to determine when you are about to drift out of your lane and into another one. When the car senses a drift, it will trigger an alarm, usually a vibration in the steering wheel or a light that flashes to let you know you are leaving your lane. This is a great technology for newer drivers as well to help them get acclimated to driving by themselves.
Blind spot monitoring is very similar to lane departure warnings. If there is another vehicle near your car, a small indicator will light up letting you know that it’s not safe to merge. Combined with lane departure monitoring, these two technologies can help prevent wrecks.
Built-in Health Monitoring
Vehicles that can monitor your health are available today, but the technology is really expected to take off in the next few years. In a sense, with this feature your vehicle acts as any health monitoring technology does, such as a Fitbit.
Vehicles equipped with this technology use seats and seat belts that can monitor your heart rate, breathing and other easily-read vital statistics and display them on the dash equipment. While you may not think this is a very important technology to have, it can be very helpful for people with potentially harmful conditions, such as people at risk for heart attacks or even strokes or seizures. Health technology may be able to help notify someone driving that they are about to have a health problem so they can get to a hospital immediately, or at the very least stop driving to prevent an accident.
This seems to be the technology everyone dreams of: imaging being able to get into your car and have it take you where you want to go without having to drive yourself. And the good news is that it’s coming sooner than you think.
Within the next few years, self-driving cars should be a relatively normal occurrence. The technology has grown by leaps and bounds over the last decade, with big tech players such as Tesla, Google and Apple competing to see who can create the most perfect automatic car. Ride-sharing companies like Uber are also getting in on the technology, so you can expect automation to be a key feature when you buy a vehicle in a few years.
As with the other safety technologies, self-driving cars will use a series of cameras, sensors and a central computer to get you safely from point A to point B.
All of these technologies are available now or very soon. If you’re looking for a new vehicle, try Baldwin Subaru.
Ellis Fox is a true tech geek who loves to keep an eye on the latest technology. He also enjoys writing about them to post on various technology and science sites.