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BMW CES 2016

Smart car: BMW’s vision of tomorrow’s high-tech car – in pictures

BMW CES 2016BMW is once again a star draw at the Consumer Electronics Show. This year, its CES 2016 showcase is all about how we’ll interact with the technology fitted to the cars of tomorrow.

At the world’s biggest tech show, it showed us how.

BMW i Vision Future Interaction

BMW CES 2016

The centrepiece of BMW at CES 2016 is its i Vision Future Interaction show car. This concept carries the ideas its tech boffins have been working on, revealing what the dashboard of the future may look like – and how we’ll use it.

BMW i8 Concept Spyder

BMW CES 2016

OK, the i Vision Future Interaction isn’t an all-new car. It’s a tech-packed version of BMW’s open-top i8 Concept Spyder (itself coming soon, surely?). The stuff within is new, though…

The multi-screen BMW

BMW CES 2016

The first thing you need to know is the number of displays: there are three. The driver’s centrepiece is the Head-Up Display, supported by a snazzy 3D instrument pack below. But the most striking screen…

A panoramic vision

BMW CES 2016

…is the new 21-inch panorama display, which stretches across the passenger-side dashboard. It’s a stunning widescreen spectacle.

Dream screen

BMW CES 2016

The panorama display is 110mm high and has multiple uses, both for driver and passenger. Some of this is dependent on which driving mode is selected – yes, the i Vision Future Interaction is an autonomous BMW concept, too.

BMW’s multi-mode driving future

BMW envisages three driving modes in the future. ‘Pure Drive’ is, like today’s BMWs, all down to the driver. ‘Assist’ gives autonomous support and ‘Auto Mode’ takes over completely. Significantly, BMW says such autonomous driving is coming on its cars very soon to approved stretches of road.

Drive mode guide

When it’s in Auto Mode, the BMW’s steering wheel lights up blue. When the car leaves an approved section of road, it turns to red: the driver must take over. If they don’t? The car comes gently to a halt at the side of the road.

Content to suit the mode

The panorama screen does different things depending on driving mode. In Full Auto Mode? It will then, say, switch from an audio phone call to a widescreen video call.

i8 Spyder vision: a web on wheels

Another advantage of being in Full Auto mode is that it unlocks full web access, emails and audiovisual tech – stream a movie to your BMW and watch it in glorious 21-inch widescreen HD. That’ll make the commute a bit easier.

Living room on wheels

To make the most of this autonomy, BMW reconfigures the i8 Vision Future Interaction’s interior in Full Auto mode. The steering wheel moves forward out the way, seats reprofile so the driver can turn and watch the panorama screen; even the headrest has been tailored.

Control via AirTouch

Such tech sounds fine, but how do you control it? BMW doesn’t like touchscreens – that’s why it’s been able to push the panorama screen forward for ideal viewing. Luckily, it’s invented a touch-style way of using it, called AirTouch. No fiddly interfaces here; it’s just like Minority Report.

AirTouch: virtual touchscreen

With AirTouch, sensors in the dash let you scroll sideways through the screen with swipe motions, with icon options popping up as tiles. An ‘air-touch’ gesture is sufficient to choose and select what you want.

AirTouch: does it work?

The big question: is it a load of hot air? At CES 2016, visitors are able to get hands-on with it to decide if they really are like Tom Cruise…

Real touch backup…

Don’t like the idea of this air-gesture stuff? A halfway-house is scrolling using gestures but making selections via a physical button on the steering wheel or passenger-side door sill. And if you’re a traditionalist, a touch-sensitive surface on the leather seats (yes, really) lets you go old school.

BMW’s second CES 2016 i8 showcar

The i Vision Future Interaction isn’t the only concept i8 BMW has at CES 2016. Enter the i8 Mirrorless. It’s an i8. Without mirrors.

BMW i8 Mirrorless

Instead of door mirrors, this i8 has two rear-facing cameras made from Gorilla Glass and housed in aero-tuned pods. A third camera is mounted in the rear screen.

All-seeing i

Images from the three cameras are merged into a high-res widescreen display, sitting where the interior rear-view mirror normally resides. It misses nothing, there are no blind spots and it doesn’t need to be adjusted for individual drivers.

Smart rear-view screen

It’s a smart screen too. If the driver indicates to move into a new lane and it detects a fast-approaching car in the ‘blind spot’, a yellow warning icon flashes. The system also auto-swivels in sharp city corners for an even wider view.

BMW’s cycle-friendly mirror

It will also pick up cyclists and warn if they’re approaching from the rear. Good for cyclist vs. motorist harmony in Central London, then.

‘Back seat driver’

Passengers will love the BMW i8 Mirrorless’ tech, too. They get a rearward view just as good as the driver. The interior’s also quieter for them; no external mirrors means less wind noise (and better fuel economy).

Mirrorless tech: coming soon?

Current legislation forbids cars without external rear-view mirrors. BMW has a halfway-house that may be coming soon, though: the i3 Extended Rearview Mirror, which mixes both old and new.

Rear-view mirror ‘plus’

A camera in the roof overlays images onto the regular rear-view mirror. This allows the wider-screen view and also includes the warning alerts of the i8 Mirrorless. It’s coming soon as an option to a BMW near you, we hear…

BMW and the Internet of Things

BMW’s future tech isn’t all fancy screens and movie-style gestures. At CES 2016, it’s showcasing the technology powering it. The BMW of tomorrow will be fully connected to other devices as a component in the so-called ‘Internet of Things’.

BMW Connected: the ultimate digital assistant

A key component in owning tomorrow’s BMW will be using BMW Connected. This integrates the car more fully into the owner’s life, as part of a ‘total mobility solution’. Huh? It means the car will digitally merge into your life, rather than being a disconnected box on wheels.

Digital car component?

Can’t get your head around it? Don’t worry. It’s all very new and forward-looking, and BMW admits this approach to mobility is radical and ‘an industry first’. As with smartphones, we’ll get there.

The self-learning BMW

Part of BMW Connected’s functionality is learning your regular journeys and thus alerting you if there’s traffic en route. It will know if there’s traffic on your way to work, for example. It may even send an alert to your smartwatch to set off earlier…

The engine: Open Mobility Cloud

Powering BMW Connected is the Open Mobility Cloud. This has the necessary ‘learning capability’ and lets BMW Connected integrate with other third-party apps and, significantly, other networked systems. Hence it being a complete ‘smart digital mobility assistant’.

How the BMW Internet of Things car will work

What sort of things will this smart connected tech allow BMWs to do? Link with a smart mirror in your house for one, which it calls Mobility Mirror. As you check your hair and tie in the morning, this networked mirror will also show diary dates, traffic updates and the state of charge of your BMW i3 parked outside.

Networked heating

If you’ve got your smart coffee machine hooked up to the Open Mobility Cloud, turning it on will automatically start pre-heating your i3’s cabin.

Valet parking

Picking up your i3 key will trigger it to autonomously drive out your garage and be sitting outside your house waiting for you.

Watch the valet

You can even watch the i3 auto-park if you want: BMW Connected will show you the view from the car’s cameras on your smartphone, smartwatch or, yes, the Mobility Mirror.

Virtual security guard

This has added functionality. If the car senses someone has driven it, BMW Connected will automatically feed the view from the cameras to the driver’s smartphone. They’ll get popup alerts if the car is hit, too; BMW calls it Bumper Detect.

Heat your home from your car

You can control things in the home from the car as well. Samsung’s invented a ‘Smart Things’ app that hooks up smart home functions, which means you can turn on the heating or check the doors are locked from your iDrive screen as you drive.

It’s not all cars

It’s not only cars that are getting smart. BMW makes around 120,000 motorcycles a year and, at CES 2016, it has demonstrated world-first laser lights for bikes.

Twice-as-bright motorcycle lights

Fitted to a BMW K 1600 GTL concept machine, BMW’s motorcycle laser lights are twice as good as normal lights, with a range of more than half a kilometre.

Head-up displays for riders

BMW launched Europe’s first head-up display in 2003. Now it’s coming to bikes, as previewed by the head-up display helmet. This displays data in front of the rider’s eyes, so they no longer have to look down at the instruments.

Safety benefit

Fully programmable, display options include sat nav, tyre pressures, speed and fuel level. Future vehicle-to-vehicle communication will also allow incidents on the road ahead to be flashed up – a huge safety boon for riders.

Find your friends

Motorcyclists who like going on ride-outs will love this possible tech: other riders could be visualised on the head-up display, so you can see where your mates are even if you can’t ‘see’ them…

Motorcycle head-up display: coming soon

BMW’s designed the system to be fitted to any helmet. All it needs are two batteries, which run for five hours between charges. Tantalisingly, it’ll be developed to production level “within the next few years”.

Smart streetlights

BMW even wants to make streetlights smarter. They’re potentially a ready-made EV recharging infrastructure: all you need is a charge plug on each lamp. Enter BMW Light & Charge…

The streetlamp of the future

These modular LED lights can replace normal streetlamps and come fitted with a standardised EV charge connector. They’re contactless: use a chargepoint card or, naturally, a smartphone app.

Smartlamps: coming soon near you?

BMW will carry out trials in Oxford, Munich and Los Angeles with the new streetlight charge point system. London and Berlin decision-makers have also expressed an interest in trying it.

Cool new BMW tech you can buy today

The CES 2016 showcase is all well and good, but can you actually buy any of this today? Well, sort of: BMW also had its new 7 Series on show, which includes things like Gesture Control and rear-seat BMW Touch Command.

BMW Gesture Control is here

Gesture Control is a production first: swipe, point and rotate hand movements are picked up by a 3D sensor in the dash so you can accept phone calls or turn up the stereo without touching the dash.

BMW tablet

BMW even has its own tablet computer in the back of the new 7 Series, incorporating BMW Touch Command to adjust air con, seats and lights, plus surf the net and play video games. All this is today, but it sounds like there’s plenty more coming tomorrow, too…

Ford CES 2016

CES 2016: car tech review of the show

Ford CES 2016The automotive world is getting its head around the smart new world of connected cars. If you drive an old car, your onboard tech is almost certainly terrible, but the good news is that it’s changing. CES 2016 showed how.

Because cars are now a thing at CES. They have even become a staple in the ‘must see’ guide for the non-automotive tech titles reporting from the event. These guys have no interest in cars but, now makers belatedly starting to smarten up, they’re fascinated by the tech within them.

Cars themselves may still not be cool, but car tech? Big winner.

Which is why many were actually rather nonplussed by the appearance of an all-new 1,000hp all-electric supercar that looks like a modern Batmobile here at CES. Yes, Faraday will be making the new FFZero1 just up the road in Nevada, but maybe it should have waited for Detroit to show off its bold new concept.

Here, among the tech community who don’t care for 200mph top speeds and compare everything automotive to Tesla, it lacked appeal. What, you can’t buy it? They’re not gong into detail about the in-car tech? Wait, what, they don’t even have any running cars yet? Consumer electronics works in quarters: the years it’ll take Faraday to come to market are anathema here.

(Rumours that it’s the Apple Car in disguise didn’t convince the tech guys either. “Apple wouldn’t launch something like that,” scoffed one.)

At least you can now buy the Chevrolet Bolt. This was a smarter move, although GM did its very best to keep the thing hidden from the press and even those who did get to see it simply compared it to Tesla. “A Tesla for the average guy” I heard it dismissed as in the pressroom.

Maybe that’s why Mercedes-Benz concept was one we’d already seen at Frankfurt, and Audi didn’t bring one at all. It did bring a mock-up of its new multi-touchscreen interior, although this slightly alarmed us as, while clever, it was hardly intuitive and looked a scattered mish-mash of ideas.

We prefer BMW’s solution, showcased in its i Vision Future Interaction concept car (really an old i8 Spyder concept with the doors (bloody) blown off). It’s clever, but simple: very Apple. There’s a head-up display and 3D console screen for the driver, and a wonderful 21-inch panoramic screen stretching across the passenger side that showcases all the infotainment and multimedia features.

It’s so big, BMW had to mount it well out of reach in order to be legible. So how do you operate it? By a new control system it’s invented called AirTouch (fairly Apple?). Make gestures to flip across menus, swap screens, even choose sub-menu tiles; then make your selection with a dab of a hard control. It’s a touch-sensitive mouse in gestures.

Next-generation stuff and BMW’s still perfecting the fundamentals, but the gesture control logic seemed delightfully intuitive and the tech community at CES relished the opportunity of trialling, and feeding back on, all-new tech in its infancy.

BMW continued to impress them with its other near-future concepts. The Connected Mirror, the Open Mobility Cloud virtual brain that oversees mobility via the BMW Connected app, the head-up motorcycle display, the ‘mirrorless’ i8 concept whose replacement cameras use glass made by a Silicon Valley starlet, Gorilla.

Of all the car brands, BMW seems to best ‘get’ CES. Forget the cars themselves, they’re not a draw. Instead show off the tech within, both current and future, as indulgently and relevantly as possible. This, after all, is the show that sets the trends for the future.

Volkswagen certainly wants to set a few new trends and overcome the emissions scandal that has engulfed it. In his keynote, Dr. Herbert Diess started out by apologising, which pleased the loyalists in attendance, then rolled out a Golf concept with next-gen gesture-based infotainment tech he confirmed would be in showrooms “before we gather again for CES 2017”. Textbook turnaround stuff.

Then the sucker punch: revealing a concept reinvention of the original Microbus so loved by hippies and hipsters, dripping in futuristic tech and Internet of Things connectivity. BUDD-e is electric, it can drive itself, it has a sofa in the back (and an HD screen on the wall): yes, it was a new car, but what a car to make the tech community sit up and go hurrah.

The knockout was Volkswagen’s tacit confirmation something like this will become a production reality by 2019. Why else base it on its new modular electric vehicle platform, MEB? Power to you, VW. (But pity about the name: BUDD-e? Seriously?)

Of course, the real insight at CES is gained from wearing out the shoe leather and walking all the stands; that’s automotive, automotive supplier, general tech and the multitude of traders all showing off gadgetry they’ve either invented themselves or bought over from abroad. This is where you find what’s coming to the car of the future.

It seems aftermarket car stereo will hook into your car’s network and display gauges you don’t already have (and not only diagnose what the glowing warning light on the dash is, but also allow you to clear it). Child seats will auto-latch and have their own app to monitor their state. Comedy licence plates will contain serious ADAS cameras. Microsoft Office will be available on the drive to and from the office.

And then there’s the potential of the Internet of Things. Cars are going to become a ‘Thing’, talking to your other ‘Things’ as part of an extended network. You’ll turn on the heating from your infotainment screen as you drive home. Receive security alerts from your car as you watch TV (and turn on the cameras to see what’s going on). Even beckon your autonomous car from your garage simply by kicking up the keyfob.

It’s beyond tantalising. Cars have developed into fantastic driving machines over the past century, but have remained pretty dumb while the traditional bell telephone has evolved into the smartphone. Now it’s cars’ turn to be digitised.

What’s clear is that this won’t mean cars will simply drive around themselves like autonomous robots. ‘Highly automated, if you want’ is the vibe at CES: the Google Car isn’t a realistic vision of a self-driving car.

It will mean we may not want to drive, though. Cars will have so much cool stuff packed in, driving may become reserved for pleasure: let it take over for the chore of commuting because you’ve got emails to check via Harman’s Microsoft Office integration, or music to listen to from either its entry-level Venture or high-end Summit audio systems.

No wonder the tech world is embracing cars. They’re the next big device to get excited about. We really haven’t seen nothing yet.

Aston Martin Letv CES 2016

CES 2016: smart Aston Martin concept is a bit more Bond-like

Aston Martin Letv CES 2016Aston Martin has revealed at CES 2016 a key building block in making the smarter, more Bond-like cars of the future its buyers are demanding: the Autolink Rapide S.

Developed with big Chinese tech brand Letv , the current-gen Rapid S has had its instrument panel and centre console replaced by two screens:

  • 13.3 inch HD touchscreen for the centre console
  • 12.2 inch screen for electronic instrumentation

Aston Martin’s ever-ageing HMI has been updated with Letv speed recognition tech.

The concept car quickly follows an MOU signed by the two firms in December 2015, perhaps explaining its rather clunky appearance: production versions will be a lot sleeker.

Aston Martin Letv CES 2016

Interestingly, Aston said MOU was initially to range from developing connected electric vehicles through to the manufacturing consultation itself on manufacturing EVs: this suggests the Letv architecture will stand separately to the Daimler-based architecture its future sports cars are to use.

Letv itself only showed the Autolink system for the first time in November 2015; the firm’s first automotive product, co-founder Ding Lei said it equips Aston Martin with an ‘internet brain’.

Autolink also brings the firm’s LeCloud connectivity for remote services and monitoring, and should offer future functionality through the firm’s global open auto eco system.

Harman Infinity Voyager Drive

CES 2016: Harman answers Millennials’ in-car audio dreams

Harman Infinity Voyager DriveMillennials want music wherever they go, which is why portable music devices are so popular amongst them. They’re also most likely to drive affordable small cars where cost and low monthly payments are vital.

Harman’s combined the two at CES 2016 and created the audio solution of the future for them: Infinity Voyager Drive.

At its core is a tough portable Bluetooth speaker. This can be docked into a self-contained speaker unit built into the dash, seamlessly: the music doesn’t even pause.

Nor will it pause when you take it out again.

The Voyager unit is scalable too: add on a portable subwoofer, combine other Voyager units, or simply enjoy the premium audio experience of the basic install without the premium price tag.

Add in the fact it means automakers won’t have to fit a stereo, speakers in the doors or other costly gubbins and it’s a compelling concept, believes Harman.

“Automakers recognise that premium audio can be an effective way to differentiate their vehicles and appeal to new customers, and they are looking for next-generation features that go beyond traditional sound reproduction,” said John Fitzgerald, SVP and general manager, Car Audio for Harman.

“We are redefining the concept of automotive audio as adaptive and tailored to each individual in ways never before possible and, for the first time, we are extending these experiences beyond the vehicle to seamlessly connect music to more elements of consumers’ daily lives.”

How it works

Harman Infinity Voyager Drive

The base unit is a detachable wireless speaker that docks with six dynamic in-dash speakers.

Dirac Panorama sound stage algorithms offer standard surround sound functionality, which could be tailored to the acoustics of individual cars. These

Scalability comes with the Voyager Drive+ removable bass box: keep it in the boot and take both it and the Voyager Drive unit outside for the mythical beach parties tech marketers so love (or, more likely, a summer BBQ in the back garden).

It also has SoundClear noise cancellation tech and offers Harman AMX compatibility that will connect to things in your home such as lighting. Free disco lights: what could be better?

Carmakers are interested, says Harman: look out for it coming as an option to entry-level cars within the next few years.

Harman Infinity Voyager Drive

CES 2016: Harman answers Millennials' in-car audio dreams

Harman Infinity Voyager DriveMillennials want music wherever they go, which is why portable music devices are so popular amongst them. They’re also most likely to drive affordable small cars where cost and low monthly payments are vital.

Harman’s combined the two at CES 2016 and created the audio solution of the future for them: Infinity Voyager Drive.

At its core is a tough portable Bluetooth speaker. This can be docked into a self-contained speaker unit built into the dash, seamlessly: the music doesn’t even pause.

Nor will it pause when you take it out again.

The Voyager unit is scalable too: add on a portable subwoofer, combine other Voyager units, or simply enjoy the premium audio experience of the basic install without the premium price tag.

Add in the fact it means automakers won’t have to fit a stereo, speakers in the doors or other costly gubbins and it’s a compelling concept, believes Harman.

“Automakers recognise that premium audio can be an effective way to differentiate their vehicles and appeal to new customers, and they are looking for next-generation features that go beyond traditional sound reproduction,” said John Fitzgerald, SVP and general manager, Car Audio for Harman.

“We are redefining the concept of automotive audio as adaptive and tailored to each individual in ways never before possible and, for the first time, we are extending these experiences beyond the vehicle to seamlessly connect music to more elements of consumers’ daily lives.”

How it works

Harman Infinity Voyager Drive

The base unit is a detachable wireless speaker that docks with six dynamic in-dash speakers.

Dirac Panorama sound stage algorithms offer standard surround sound functionality, which could be tailored to the acoustics of individual cars. These

Scalability comes with the Voyager Drive+ removable bass box: keep it in the boot and take both it and the Voyager Drive unit outside for the mythical beach parties tech marketers so love (or, more likely, a summer BBQ in the back garden).

It also has SoundClear noise cancellation tech and offers Harman AMX compatibility that will connect to things in your home such as lighting. Free disco lights: what could be better?

Carmakers are interested, says Harman: look out for it coming as an option to entry-level cars within the next few years.

Volvo Concept 26

CES 2016: 9 in 10 consumers want autonomous cars to pass human driving tests

Volvo Concept 269 out of 10 car owners have spoken. They still want a steering wheel in their self-driving car. They still want ultimate control for the drive. And 8 out of 10 of them want the manufacturer to take responsibility if the car crashes in autonomous mode.

Indeed, 9 in 10 motorists actually want a self-driving car to pass the human driving test before being allowed onto the road.

So says a survey of 10,000 worldwide respondents to a Volvo survey on the future of driving revealed at CES 2016. Sounds like most are lukewarm to autonomous cars? Not a bit: almost 8 in 10 are convinced self-driving cars will make travelling more productive and enjoyable.

Explaining why the steering wheel is thus going nowhere, Volvo’s Monitoring & Concept Centre chief Anders Tylman-Mikiewicz said: “People have told us that they need to feel in control and have the choice of when to delegate driving to the car.

“Today, that need is ultimately fulfilled with the presence of a steering wheel. Therefore, a steering wheel is necessary until those needs change.”

He also takes a happy vision of self-driving cars from the survey. “Imagine a highway of autonomous cars, each filled with people relaxing, enjoying their favourite TV shows in high definition, or catching up on work.

“It’s exciting to think about.” When asked if they agree, motorists said yes. Just don’t ditch the steering wheel and make sure your liability insurance is up to scratch, automakers.

McLaren 675LT JVCKENWOOD

CES 2016: Surprise McLaren 675LT JVCKENWOOD Concept debuts

McLaren 675LT JVCKENWOODMcLaren has unexpectedly revealed an even more special 675LT at CES 2016, based on an old prototype model it used to develop the 500 now-sold-out coupes: say hello to the tech-packed 675LT JVCKenwood.

Developed to incorporate JVCKenwood’s new Caroptronics technology, it boasts a fully digital cockpit, a head-up display instead of the regular dial console and a suite of Advance Driver Assist Systems (ADAS).

The regular door mirrors are replaced by digital cameras, whose aero mountings actually aid downforce at speed.

McLaren’s also used the Caroptronics tech to replace the rear-view mirror with a three-camera blindspot-reducing digital setup.

25-year anniversary

McLaren 675LT JVCKENWOOD

McLaren has also created the special edition one-off to mark 25 years of its F1 partnership with JVCKenwood. Hence capitalising on the minimalist tech to take even more out of the cabin – giving it a racer-like appearance.

Smartly, McLaren’s fitted the steering wheel from the P1 GTR; its IPAS and DRS buttons are replaced by the positioning controls for the head-up display. The dials themselves are replaced by a cooling air vent for the driver.

There’s a mix of silver fabric, black Nappa leather, deep blue stitching and brilliant orange detailing. Race-inspired indeed.

Outside, it’s much more subtle. The biggest differentiator are the door mirror camera blades and the JVCKENWOOD silver stripes on the hood, roof and Longtail Airbrake. Kenwood graphics feature on the doors too.

McLaren’s design leader Peter Wilkins incorporated all the JVCKenwood Caroptronics tech into the 675LT; that the team have done it so elegantly suggests that cool new connected car tech may be coming to McLaren Autos sooner rather than later…

Volkswagen BUDD-e

Volkswagen BUDD-e: the electric Microbus for 2019

The much-loved Volkswagen Microbus has been reinvented: say hello to your new buddy

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Kia Drive Wise

CES 2016: Kia brands autonomous tech Drive Wise

Kia Drive WiseKia is getting into autonomous cars in a big way – and at CES 2016, it’s even announced it’s creating a new sub-brand for the high-tech cars, called Drive Wise.

The umbrella brand for all its Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), Drive Wise will be the brand under which Kia’s planned 2020 partially-autonomous production cars are sold.

By 2030, there will be a fully autonomous Kia Drive Wise self-driving car in showrooms.

The announcement of Drive Wise follow’s Kia’s recent commitment to invest £1.3 billion into driverless cars tech.

At CES 2016, Kia’s showing plenty more of the Drive Wise tech it’s currently developing for launch in the next 15 years. These include:

  • Highly Autonomous Driving – allows a car to auto-drive at high speed and change lanes without driver input
  • Urban Autonomous Driving – self-drives through cities using GPS and road position sensors; can even respond to live traffic reports
  • Preceding Vehicle Following – follows the car in front at a safe distance
  • Emergency Stop System – automatically stops the car if the driver’s eyes stray from the road for too long (if they, say, fall asleep…)
  • Traffic Jam Assist – the car keeps going without crashing and even changes lane to move along faster
  • Autonomous Parking & Out – get out the car and park it by remote control

Tae-Won Lim, SVP, Central Advanced Research and Engineering Institute of Hyundai Motor Group, said, “Kia is undergoing a very promising and gradual process of introducing partially and fully autonomous technologies to its vehicles.

“Although the first marketable fully-autonomous car from Kia will not be available in the immediate future, the work our R&D teams are currently doing to develop our range of Drive wise technologies is already improving on-road safety and driver assistance.”

CES 2016: Bosch wins award for touchscreen ‘feel’ button tech

Bosch_haptic_touchscreenPart of Bosch’s show car interior at CES 2016 has already won a prize: the all-new ‘real feel’ touchscreen has scooped an Innovation Award.

This clever screen uses haptic tech to feel like it has real buttons, be they rough, smooth or patterned. It doesn’t only generate different surface textures either, but also adds a ‘click’ so users know they have to press more firmly to make a selection.

“Drivers will not even need to look at the information on the screen to control it,” says Bosch – solving one of the biggest gripes of touchscreens in cars; that they can’t be controlled by feel.

Other functionality Bosch has integrated into the ‘Touch & Feel’ touchscreen include varying pressure logic: by changing how hard they press, users can control how fast they scroll through a list.

In contrast, using light pressure calls up the help function.

So how does it work? It users two sensors – the conventional touch sensor is augmented by an additional sensor that measures pressure from the fingers.

The varying surfaces are then created with a combination of software and suspension mechanics.