The fu­ture to­day

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Cover Story - Paul Gover

I’VE driven lots of cars that park them­selves, some that drive them­selves and a bunch that do ev­ery­thing they can to stop you killing them — and your­self — in­clud­ing au­to­matic brak­ing.

BMWis work­ing on a smart key that al­lows you to start the car and also un­locks a ho­tel room, pro­vided of course that your car has made a book­ing and paid in ad­vance.

The next Mercedes-Benz S-Class limou­sine, due in Novem­ber, will have a pair of 30cm dis­play screens in the dash­board to han­dle data trans­fer — the only way to de­scribe it these days — to the driver and front-seat pas­sen­ger.

Do I like all this tech­nol­ogy? Some­times.

Sat­nav is mar­vel­lous when you’re out of town or over­seas. It’s nice to have a range of en­ter­tain­ment choices linked to my iPhone, and Blue­tooth has made in-car con­ver­sa­tions much safer. Land Rover has a clever dual-dis­play screen that al­lows the driver to see the sat­nav while the pas­sen­ger plays on Google or watches a movie. Tech such as this will mi­grate rapidly to al­most ev­ery­thing priced above $35,000.

The day is com­ing when GPS and sat­nav could eas­ily be used to en­sure you never break the speed limit. And that’s a day I don’t want to see.

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