Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Car Trends to Watch in 2017 and Beyond

The notion of driverless cars and trucks still seems astonishing to most of us, even though test vehicles by the likes of Waymo (Google) have already logged millions of miles on public roads, with humans only rarely taking control.

It will be a long time before computers drive all vehicles on our roads. But like it or not, anyone who buys a new car in the years ahead will be taking part in the autonomous-vehicle revolution.

Under new rules proposed by the U.S. government, all new cars must be able to wirelessly “talk” to one another starting in 2020. It’s a crucial first step in making our roadways friendlier to driverless cars and trucks. It will also make your driving experience safer, more convenient, and even more fun.

When camera- and sensor-equipped “connected cars” talk to each other, they will be able to send messages along the lines of “swerve left to avoid a mattress on the highway,” or “get ready to stop—there’s a blind curve up ahead and all the cars are at a standstill due to an accident.” Your car in such scenarios will take control, reacting faster than you ever could. The technology could save your life.

Connected cars will also make life easier. In the years ahead, new cars will link to the likes of Amazon Echo with its virtual assistant Alexa. Stuck in traffic, you’ll be able to say “Alexa, play my ‘Serenity Now’ music playlist,” or “Alexa, put in our usual Amazon Fresh grocery order and have it delivered by 8 a.m.” If your home is wired, too, your car will be able to tell your house to do things like make a pot of coffee, open the garage door, turn off the burglar alarm or crank up the AC. It won’t be long before you’ll be able to drive to the front of a mall, hop out of your car and have it park itself. Later, your car will pick you up like a dutiful chauffer.

At Advanced Tire & Auto Center, we decided eight years ago to invest our time and money into becoming experts on state-of-the-art cars. Given today’s amazing developments in automotive technology, we feel pretty good about that decision!