Category Archives: Car Technology

Nielsen AutoTECHCAST Report Shows Growing Interest in Auto Technology and Safety

summer convertible driver - man and woman - Nielsen AutoTECHCAST report

The 2016 Nielsen AutoTECHCAST report, released on August 24, showed that consumer interest in auto technologies and safety features is growing as more and more vehicles come equipped with these features. The report surveyed 11,886 US consumers over a month in March and April of this year.

In order, Nielsen found that consumers care most about safety technology, then connectivity, then comfort and convenience, driver assistance, and fuel efficiency. Consumers showed the most interest in rear-vision cameras and collision and blind-spot detection and prevention systems.

The AutoTECHCAST report also found that 53% of drivers believe the auto industry is doing a good job in developing features that improve safety and reduce driving distractions. 73% of drivers said they are much more likely to purchase a vehicle with blind spot detection and similar features than one without. Consumers are also starting to care more about the reputation of the company they’re buying from.

The survey also found that connected car features are one of the least-known parts of auto technologies, with a third of respondents not knowing they existed, and millennials being the most interested generation in new car technologies. Overall, though, US drivers know more about cars and new technologies in 2016 than the last three Nielsen surveys have indicated.

The Pros and Cons of Going All-Electric

 Pros and cons of going all-electric

Hybrid and all-electric vehicles are becoming more and more relevant and important as we move onward into the future. As the “tomorrow” of the auto industry begins to take shape, it’s starting to look more and more like an electric-dominated world.

 

So, what are the pros and cons of going all-electric right now? Here’s our quick take on why you should or should not take the electro-leap:

 

Pros

  • You could “fill up” at home: Many people avoid all-electric because they’re not sure where they’d fuel up, and it’s true that public electric-charging facilities are not nearly as prevalent as your normal gas station. But, in many cases you can charge your car overnight at home for up to 80-100 miles.
  • Not just low emissions – ZERO emissions: If doing your part for a cleaner environment is important to you, you can’t do any better than by driving an all-electric vehicle.
  • Oh silent ride: if you’ve never ridden in or driven an electric vehicle before, you can’t truly grasp what it means to be riding in an almost totally silent

 

Cons

  • Takes a while to recharge: While plugging in your car takes only about 15 seconds, filling it with juice averages about 20-25 miles of range an hour.
  • All-Electric can be expensive: Though electric vehicles are becoming more widespread, they’re still a fair bit more expensive than their gas-guzzling counterparts.
  • Fewer options at the dealership: Again, as of today, there are fewer electric options than gas options for your next car. So, if you want to get into an all-electric vehicle, your options are somewhat limited. Luckily, there are plenty of hybrid options!

 

What do you think of these pros and cons of going all-electric? Are you on board the electro-train already? Or do you plan on driving on gas until the bitter end?

Toyota Automated Driving to be Available by 2020

Toyota Camry Interior

Despite the Google Car’s frequent appearances in the media, Toyota has been working on and testing the same technology since the 1990s (for nearly two decades). Today, the company expects Toyota automated driving to be a feature present in vehicles as soon as 2020.

Toyota originally referred to the feature as “advanced driver support,” but began using the term automated driving instead in order to compete with other companies who are testing similar technology. Instead of making vehicles that are entirely self-driving, Toyota seeks a more applicable approach that could bridge the gap between current vehicles and the automated cars of the future.

In Toyota’s version of automated car technology, both car and driver work together to minimize accidents and improve traffic flow. A prototype, termed “Highway Teammate” by the company, can be switched into a self-driving mode on the highway in which it can merge, change lanes, and depart via exit ramps without driver input. However, the driver must take control of the wheel when not in this mode.

Toyota automated driving is advanced technology that allows drivers to focus on other things due to innovative sensors and radar. Instead of being an entirely driverless car, it seamlessly switches between driving itself and requiring driver control to allow for a more futuristic, smooth driving experience. Visit one of the Joseph Auto Group Toyota locations for more!

How Does Driver Assist Work?

Cadillac Escalade

Driver assist technologies are becoming more and more common in today’s vehicles, and they’re dramatically increasing road safety. But how does driver assist work?

There are several different driver assist technologies available, and most rely on sensory input from other vehicles and the environment. Cars with driver assist systems use radar and cameras to sense how close other cars are, where other cars are located relative to your car, how bright it is outside, and more.

Adaptive cruise control, for instance, is constantly taking in information around it to slow down when you’re getting too close to the car in front of you and then speed up to the chosen max speed when the road is clear.

Automatic braking uses similar technology, sensing when the car is about to collide with the car ahead and automatically stopping before a crash can occur.

Some cars have a driver drowsiness sensor that takes in information about how you drive, analyzes it, and then detects any changes that could indicate the driver is losing focus.

This barely scratches the surface of what driver assist systems can do. For more info, ask us at Joseph Auto!