A Honda that earns you money in ‘down­time’

The Star Early Edition - - TECHNOLOGY - JESSE ADAMS

HONDA has worked out that most pri­vately owned cars sit parked do­ing noth­ing for 96 per­cent of their lives, and has come up with an en­ter­pris­ing new way to make own­ers money dur­ing all that idle time.

The NeuV (pro­nounced New Vee) is an all-elec­tric con­cept car that not only op­er­ates with Level Four au­ton­omy (mean­ing it needs no help from a driver to scoot around town), but can nip off to per­form Uber-like du­ties when you’re not us­ing it. And, if rak­ing in the dough as a taxi boss isn’t enough, it can also sell some of its bat­tery power back to a city’s elec­tric­ity grid in times of high de­mand.

The NeuV was re­cently re­vealed at the Con­sumer Elec­tron­ics Show (CES) in Las Ve­gas, where Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence over­took Au­ton­omy as the new buzz­word on au­to­mo­tive stands, and Honda’s been do­ing home­work in this de­part­ment too.

Built into the tiny two-seater run­about is an on­board AI sec­re­tary named Hana (Honda Au­to­mated Net­work As­sis­tant), who’s rep­re­sented by an Emoji-like icon in the NeuV’s full-width dig­i­tal dash­board. Hana can judge your mood based on fa­cial ex­pres­sions and rec­om­mend some sooth­ing No­rah Jones songs to calm your tem­per in traf­fic or Me­gadeth to wake you up in the morn­ing.

She’ll also learn your favourite hang­outs and ad­vise stops at your lo­cal pub (or cof­fee shop) if you’re feel­ing stressed.

Re­mem­ber, there’s no need to worry about get­ting tipsy, be­cause the NeuV can drive you home by it­self.

There’s also an elec­tric ‘last mile’ skate­board mounted in a stor­age space at the back for those times when a park­ing spot isn’t in close prox­im­ity to your fi­nal desti­na­tion’s front door.

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