Mirrors, reverse and starting: the 3 basic automotive systems that technology will replace

Some technological innovations are applied today, without having to wait for the cars of the future, although they are related to the new technologies available

Although they seem to be the topics on the industry agenda, not everything goes through the concepts of sustainable cars, connected cars and autonomous vehicles. Yes, these are the priorities of the manufacturers, because there are deadlines for the decarbonization imposed by governments and time is running out, because there is technology and connectivity demanding customers and this requirement must be satisfied, and because there is a new user on the horizon who will not be a driverbut a user of a car, and you want the car to give you services and not work.

PBut while advancing towards these great pillars that will mark the paradigm shift of the car of the future, we must continue to distinguish ourselves from the rest., generating novelties or solutions that improve the quality of use of a vehicle or the pleasure in the present. And the technology that is applied today in cars allows spiritual or practical developmentswhich some time ago were not on the radar, some because they required materials or systems that did not exist, others because it is only thanks to electrification that they are emerged as an alternative.

A car stands in the garage at home. The day begins and its owner goes out to work on it. The first three dynamic operations you will perform to get to the desktop all had a mode. In this way, today could change.

Open the door and start the engineIt does not matter if internal combustion or electric in this case. put the car in reverse go outside, and look at the mirrors to make sure the way is clear. It’s something natural, fundamental in this manoeuvre. Three automotive brands have innovated, each on one aspect, so that all of this can be done differently: Mercedes, Kia and Audi.

Mercedes has patented a driver identification mode, which checks biometrics and health status before starting the engine
Mercedes has patented a driver identification mode, which checks biometrics and health status before starting the engine

Mercedes has just presented to the Patent and Trademark Office, a user detection system that combines the biometric data of the person who will drive, with the wireless connection. It is a bracelet that will allow the car to detect the proximity of the driver by opening the doors. This communication could go through different technologies such as Near Field Communication (NFC), Ultra Wide Band (UWB) or the famous Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). Once the driver is seated behind the wheel, the bracelet will transmit to the car, the physical state of its user, in order to validate that he is fit to drive. In addition, Mercedes has also been developing for some time, a fingerprint sensor on the steering wheel gripwhich could perfectly replace the bracelet or complement it. Only after all identity and health parameters have been checked does the engine start.

The new KIA Niro is characterized by the absence of reverse gear in the gearbox
The new KIA Niro is characterized by the absence of reverse gear in the gearbox

After fastening the seat belt, the next step is to put the vehicle into reverse. KIA recently presented its latest model of Niro 2022, which comes in three engines. The classic internal combustion engine, a plug-in hybrid and the new 100% electric. The innovation offered by the Niro in the intermediate version, the one that combines the two modes of propulsion, is the no reverse gear in the gearbox. The explanation is very simple. Have an electric motor, the reverse operation is done by moving the car thanks to electricity and not to the combustion of the heat engine. This is only possible in a hybrid car and an electric car, of course, but represents a plus of respect for the environment for PHEV compared to conventional cars. Recoil maneuvers are completely carbon dioxide free, in addition to reduce the weight of the gearbox and therefore the electrical consumption.

The screen inside the door shows what the cameras in the traditional place of the Audi e-tron's mirrors see.
The screen inside the door shows what the cameras in the traditional place of the Audi e-tron’s mirrors see.

Now yes, reverse engaged, take a look at the mirrors to get out safely. It is true that today, with rear cameras and cross motion sensorsit’s not that often despite the reflex to do it anyway. But in an Audi e-tron, when you look out the front windows, there won’t be a mirror, and instead you’ll find a high-definition camera, which projects its image inside the door.right next to the handle to open it, through a screen. This screen, in addition, can have zoom or scroll to see more open, higher or loweras any user does when moving the mirror to get the vision they want.

The question is, if there is already a camera with included sensors, which justifies the system of replacing the classic mirror with a camera. The answer is in the aerodynamics and electrical consumption, which in the case of a battery-powered car, is fundamental. But it is also a contribution to road safety, because it is common that when trying to overtake a vehicle on a two-way road with traffic ahead, the rear-view mirror of the car to be crossed is generally an obstacle to the good vision of the driver of the car behind.

News, ideas, solutions, all practical and perfectly applicable to today’s car.

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