The smartest car invention of the year

So what are the best new technologies and solutions of the year? Car and Thatcham Research has selected five that they believe are best for the consumer and auto industry.

Exactly when that happened is impossible to say, but with the advent of electric cars and Tesla’s great interest in technology, developments in the auto industry have accelerated in recent years.

Euro NCAP (European New Car Assessment Programme), yes, the gang that crashes cars and then gives them stars, also contributed significantly. Namely, they set new requirements regarding driver assistants, and thus somehow forced the industry to develop smart things like automatic emergency braking.

One of the main partners of Euro NCAP is British Thatcham Research, which tests car crashes on behalf of Euro NCAP in the UK.

But that’s not the only thing Thatcham does.

This is an independent company that monitors what car manufacturers are doing, especially when it comes to technology and safety. In the past, they have exposed, among other things, major security vulnerabilities related to keyless car systems.

Another British sergeant is What Car. Not that they guard cars or the auto industry, but they test cars with consumers in mind. What Car, which has a question mark in its official name, comes with several thousand tests per year, including both new and used cars.

So Thatcham Research and What Car should be an especially good duo when it comes to naming the best invention of the year, and the two have also teamed up for such an award.

The Innovation Award will be awarded in January, but the finalists are already ready.

Among those vying for the title are BMW’s impressive head-up display in the new iX Series, Hyundai’s Smart Blind Spot Monitor, and the gradual change in V2X (Car for All) connectivity that enables vehicles to communicate with surroundings and each other. This is behind the Ford and Vivacity.

This is a British award, so a groundbreaking new charging station concept from Britain’s Gridserve, as well as a significant innovation in Hyundai’s fast charging technology, is also among the finalists.

“With a ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars on the horizon, the automotive sector continues to respond with a wealth of innovation to help pave the way for the successful use of electric vehicles,” said Matthew Avery of Thatcham Research.

Advances in driver assistance technology and improvements to the human vehicle interface are gaining momentum this year. We are cautiously optimistic about the potential benefits this type of technology will provide for road and passenger safety.

The price is officially called which car? Thus, the Innovation Award will honor automobile companies that have changed the frontiers of vehicle technology or dramatically improved existing solutions that make driving easier, safer and more environmentally friendly.

With them on the team, heavyweight vehicle testers have Thatcham Research.

– It’s great that Thatcham Research sponsors “Which Car?” Innovation Award for the third year in a row, says Steve Huntingford, editor at What Car.

This is a time of massive innovation in the automotive industry, so it pays to combine their expertise with that of the What Car team when considering off-road development. any car? The awards are the culmination of 12 months of testing, setting the highest standards in the automotive industry.

Well, it’s time to take a look at the five finalists, because these are pretty exciting stuff.

BMW. Innovation: HUD for iX Series

A head-up display system cleverly designed for the iX Series, BMW’s latest all-electric SUV.

HUD screen display now has virtual banners, directional indication, and significantly improved ease of use. Combines touch screen and knobs for ease of use.

Matthew Avery:

Head-up displays are nothing new, but BMW’s latest system takes technology to the next level in terms of functionality, interface and clarity. The developers have worked hard to make sure the system isn’t too prolific, and it got top marks on the What Car’s A Distraction test in 2021.

Ford and Energetic. Innovation: The RoadSafe Project

A joint venture between Ford and a consortium funded by the British government, which includes specialists in artificial intelligence sensors Vivacity.

This project collects and analyzes driving data from connected vehicles, roadside sensors, news reports and local authorities. This allows motorists to plan safer journeys, predict hazards and congested areas, and even highlights detailed information such as unrepaired potholes or poorly placed signage.

Matthew Avery:

The future is V2X technology, where connected vehicles communicate with each other and the road infrastructure. RoadSafe is an important project that has the potential to improve traffic safety. We were also impressed by the collaborative approach, which also involved Oxfordshire County Council, Loughborough University and Transport for London.

Gridserve. Innovation: Charging Farms

Pioneering front yard concept exclusively for electric cars launched in Essex, with 100 additional seats planned across the UK.

Each location offers up to 36 charging stations, shops, restaurants, airport-style lounges, and business facilities. Express shipping and technical support are also available.

Matthew Avery:

One of the main barriers to using electric vehicles is the perceived lack of charging infrastructure, and the feeling that electric drivers come second when it comes to the quality and location of the facilities. Bringing the concept of the front yard to driving electric cars is exactly the type of innovation that will lead to a wider use of electric vehicles. And the impressive capacity will make it easy for electric drivers to get a charging station when they need it most.

Hyundai. Innovation: Blindspot View Monitor

An optical innovation that uses rear and side cameras to draw attention to blind spots by displaying screenshots in the vehicle’s dashboard-mounted display when indicators are activated. Enhances blind spot imaging and encourages the use of standard glass mirrors without replacing them.

Matthew Avery:

Surveillance shots used with glass mirrors give you superior situational awareness by drawing attention to your blind spot. And he reminded motorists of using their mirrors, which is good news for cyclists and pedestrians. Hyundai plans to democratize technology by installing a BVM on most of its new vehicles.

Hyundai. Innovation: fast charging

Hyundai’s E-GMP platform for the Ioniq 5 series uses an in-vehicle 800V battery system to provide faster charging, greater range, and better handling.

Matthew Avery:

Improvements in charging point technology have significantly reduced the charging time of electric vehicles. However, Hyundai’s innovation provides fast charging for the car itself. This next-level development reduces charging time and improves the availability of charging points, which will eventually encourage more people to use electric vehicles.

So there have been five innovations that have moved the industry forward over the past year, and we can’t help but look forward to seeing what emerges in the news in 2022.

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