As most luxury cars have an abundance of style and grace, thoughts may turn to the actual practicalities of these vehicles. From the latest Porsche models all the way back to the classic Aston Martins, style has always been a priority over safety. But these days, the luxury vehicle has an abundance of technology that makes it a safer — as well as more stylish — experience. Let’s take a look at what’s out there.
If there’s too much in the way of dials and buttons in your car, gesture control could prove to be a very useful component. The idea is that these small sensors in your car learn your gesture patterns and start to make the functions of the vehicle work just by a small movement of your finger or arm, giving you the opportunity to focus on the road. This is going one step beyond the swipe option on computer tablets. The fact that the sensors in the vehicle can detect whether your hand is flat or rotating means you have complete control over the in-car functions.
While self-driving has had a bit of a bad rep in recent years, we can’t overlook the fact that this is the future for all vehicles, not just luxury ones. As the luxury cars out there offer a stylish ride, the self-driving function can take this one step further. While we see numerous stories of people overly relying on their self-driving cars to the point that they are endangering their lives, we still can’t underestimate what a self-driving car can do for us in a luxury vehicle. After all, if we’re taking advantage of the luxury interiors and want a smooth ride, self-driving vehicles are going to take the concept of relaxation into the stratosphere. And with manufacturers like Mercedes-Benz leading the charge in self-driving vehicles, the concept of high luxury autonomy is a reality.
Augmented Reality Apps
“Reality” is a very loose term in tech, especially with augmented reality apps. Augmented reality is particularly useful for people who know absolutely nothing about operating a vehicle! While these days there’s a lot of smart tech in a vehicle that’s able to tell you if there’s something wrong, having a little bit of knowledge yourself — as well as access to a decent mechanic — can ensure that you’re keeping your vehicle up to code. Of course, mechanics like Telle Tire can keep you in the loop, but the great thing about augmented reality apps is that all you need is a smartphone or a tablet and you’ve got yourself an interactive instruction manual. All you’ve got to do is point the device at the car and the component that you’re having an issue with, and it can give you detailed instructions. Using this as the first port of call if you’ve got any superficial problems with your vehicle means you have a better idea as to whether you should take it to a mechanic.
Car To X Communication
Another function spearheaded by Mercedes-Benz, the “vehicle to X communication” system shows how a vehicle can improve your experience, right there and then, by having direct communication between vehicles and even infrastructure, such as traffic lights. These functions collect and analyze the data, which is then sent to the vehicle navigation systems or communicated to you by voice, especially where the terrain is unclear. What does this mean for you? It’s able to warn you against dangers coming and give you the opportunity to plan ahead. As a result, you don’t need to put much thought into your journey and you can, to an extent, go where your instinct takes you!
Augmented Reality Driving Enhancing
Augmented reality doesn’t just help you see what’s wrong with your vehicle; the three prevailing features of augmented reality inside the vehicle can help you with navigation and lane keeping assistance, as well as adaptive cruise control. In essence, it gives you the opportunity to focus on the road, rather than the functions on the dashboard. With this nifty setup, you can see exactly how fast you are going through the windscreen. In addition to this, it shows you what lane to take, as well as if you are veering too close to the middle of a lane on a busy road. It doesn’t just benefit you on long journeys; in urban settings, it’s able to detect obstacles and pedestrians in real time.
Stolen Vehicle Tracking Software
Of course we don’t want our prized possessions stolen, so if we are to parade a luxury car around the neighbourhood, we’ve got to ensure that it’s as sufficiently protected as possible. Stolen vehicle tracking software is a great technology that the vast majority of manufacturers are building into their vehicles. The BMW ConnectedDrive system isn’t just a way to get rescue services; it can be used by law enforcement officials to get the location of a vehicle that has been stolen.
Adaptive Cruise Control
While there may be a lot of driver assist systems in vehicles now, if you are using your vehicle to commute, adaptive cruise control is the mainstay of most luxury vehicles. There is an abundance of sensors built into the vehicle so the cruise control can match the speed of the vehicles in front of you, making life easier if you are constantly in highway traffic where you’ve got to hit the brakes and the gas more than you’d like. There are some systems that enable the vehicle to stop completely and then start up again without you doing anything, which is a great advantage in rush hour traffic.
Rear Looking Sensors
One of the biggest issues for any driver these days is cyclists, especially in urban areas. After all, a car door opening without warning can spell disaster for any cyclist and injury for passengers and drivers alike. Rear looking sensors detect approaching traffic and bicycles, and are engineered to work for a few minutes after the engine has been switched off. It’s a simple system: bright lights flash to alert the driver, and even if the driver chooses to ignore the warning, a lot of the advanced systems will lock the door to stop it being opened. And in the more upmarket vehicles like the Rolls-Royce Phantom, self-closing doors add an extra layer of safety. While so many luxury cars come with these soft close doors, the self-closing ones that do it without a noisy slam can contribute to the experience overall. After all, if we’re looking to protect ourselves (as well as our luxury cars), we’ve got to keep an eye out for cyclists — but sometimes our attention slips!
And if you do struggle to keep your attention on the road, maybe you need to learn how to focus a bit more. But an attention assist feature found in most luxury vehicles now gives you a series of auditory and visual cues to put your attention back onto the road. A series of beeps and vibrations will ensure that you’re not checking your phone — but you aren’t anyway, are you?!
A 360-Degree Camera
While a lot of middle-of-the-road brands have forward and rear facing cameras to help with parking, a 360-degree camera system has helped to make life a lot easier (and lazier) for any luxury car driver. Having a camera on every side of the vehicle, as well as a virtual top-down view of your surroundings, means there’s no excuse to have a near miss any more! As insurance claims come from low-speed crashes, for the most part, a 360-degree camera works to make life safer for every driver out there.
The Key Fob
Yes, it’s not a new thing, but the upscale vehicles have wonderfully designed fobs to go with them. The Porsche fob comes with a Panamera shaped design, and the Aston Martin comes with a luxuriously stylish emotion control unit. As far as the overall luxury experience is concerned, it’s not just the car anymore; it goes all the way down to the fob!
But let’s not forget that while tech in modern vehicles makes our driving experience a far smoother one, we still need to ensure that we are safe behind the wheel. The big problem with luxury cars, for the most part, is that there’s a lot of style over safety. While most manufacturers are working hard to rectify this, we can’t overly rely on technology to do our work for us. Yes, a 360-degree camera or lane assist certainly makes our job easier, but we’ve got to remember that we have a duty behind the wheel to be as safe for other humans possible. It’s very frustrating when we see other drivers with the upmarket vehicles exercising some form of authority over the other cars, so why don’t we all begin to set a good example? The luxury car is our pride and joy, but that doesn’t mean we have to be arrogant on the road. The tech is making life easier for us, so we can take advantage of this, but let’s use it to our — and everyone’s — benefit!