It was only a matter of time before it happened. We knew it was coming and now it is here. The automated car. The car that can do many of the key functions itself without you. The driver is close to unnecessary. But how does it all work?
How does your car automate many of its different features?
The road to autonomous vehicles
You will have undoubtedly heard about the self-driving cars being developed by Google and the Auto-pilot mode available in Tesla models. Whilst this technology as a whole vehicle isn’t there for mass production yet, we are not far off.
But right now, we have multiple aspects of driving and car functions that are completely automated given the situation. These include self-parking technology, automated braking to prevent crashes and cars maintaining both lane discipline and distance from the car in front. The driver is becoming a passenger who is there in case of emergencies rather than in constant control.
The self-parking car
The idea is that drivers will be able to pull up to a shop, order the car to go park itself and they go about their weekly shop. When they have finished and paid for their shopping, they send a command from their smartphone and the car returns to the front door of the store to collect you.
We aren’t there yet, but from 2014 onwards, we’ve entered the third generation of Park Assist technology. The third generation combines all the technological advances of the previous generations and allows for the following:
Reverse parking into parallel parking spaces (Gen 1)
Reverse parking into bay parking spaces (Gen 2)
Forwards parking into bay parking spaces
Distance in bay parking spaces 35cm left and right
Distance in bay parking spaces 40 cm front and rear
Parking space detection up to 40km/h
All manufacturers are working towards automated and self-automated parking systems. The markets leaders are Volvo, Volkswagen and Toyota for fully automated parking. Most other manufacturers do have a form of semi-automated for their cars already.
Self-parking systems work with the sensors around the car calculating the distance from the cars around it. This has allowed the development from parallel parking with the first generation to a multi-manoeuvre system in the third generation where it can now parallel park, forward and reverse bat park.
The car could save your life
In recent decades, car safety has become a serious priority for car manufacturers. With the launch of Euro NCAP to test car safety, manufacturers have developed different ways of preventing car crashes as well as reducing the risk when they do happen.
This has resulted in the development of automatic braking technology. Many manufacturers have semi-automatic braking available on their cars. This system can prevent collisions but usually, resorts to simply slowing the speed of the car before it collides with another object.
High-speed collisions are almost always fatal. Therefore, reducing the speed of the car before the collision will reduce fatalities and the amount of property damage that occurs in the accident.
Automatic braking works by the sensors on the car scanning the road in front for any obstacles. These sensors can use either laser, radar or even video data technology. These sensors determine whether the object is stationary or going to slow, thereby requiring your car to slow down to avoid an accident.
More advanced automatic braking systems work with GPS data, ensuring it stops when it is meant to even if you, the driver are unaware you are supposed to. This is very helpful at Stop signs and Give-Way sections where trees may have grown over to cover the sign.
Finding a car with automated features
Most manufacturers have at least one model that has one or more automated feature, whether that be braking or parking or a full auto-pilot mode like Tesla. If you are interested in a car with any of these features and are looking to lease a car, enquire with us at Hippo Leasing and our dedicated team will find the right car to suit your needs.
Automated features are available in a variety of different car types, whether it be a family hatchback, executive saloon or off-road SUV. First, find the car that suits your general needs, then ask your account manager if any of those cars that match your requirements have automated features. It is likely that there will be a vehicle that ticks all the boxes.
Enquire with us now and get your car through car leasing today. It will be delivered to you in no time.