Con­cept: smart cars

Ford’s cars are get­ting chatty, and the word on the street is it’s all in the name of safety...

Australian T3 - - CONTENTS -

Ford’s new V2V tech­nol­ogy has cars dis­cussing how best to save your life

The dream of the talk­ing car is about to be­come a re­al­ity, but not in the way we imag­ined. There’s no con­voy of back­talk­ing, wise-cracking Trans­former-types headed our way. In­stead, cars will soon be talk­ing to one an­other via Ford’s ve­hi­cle-to-ve­hi­cle (V2V) tech. Ford’s aim is to max­imise safety, but driver-car voice com­mu­ni­ca­tion won’t be a two-way street any time soon (see the Ap­pLink box - right). Af­ter all, a chatty pas­sen­ger is dis­tract­ing enough, who wants their car cri­tiquing their driv­ing skills?

Us­ing a Wi-Fi based ra­dio sys­tem, the tech en­ables cars to com­mu­ni­cate with one an­other and alert their driv­ers to po­ten­tial dan­gers that can’t yet be seen. Ap­proach­ing a blind cor­ner? That’s no longer a prob­lem.

The ex­per­i­men­tal kit (or should that be KITT?) can de­tect speed, po­si­tion and other ve­hi­cle data re­lat­ing to cars that are hid­den from the driver’s view and then gauge if there’s a col­li­sion risk along the car’s pre­dicted path.

V2V also builds on ex­ist­ing radar tech­nol­ogy that warns of cars in your blind spot by de­tect­ing fast-mov­ing ve­hi­cles be­fore they present a dan­ger. Handy. ford.com.au, out TBC

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