2010 Spring Auto Guide
Man driving convertible
7 amazing advances in new car technology

New technology that is either in vehicles now or coming soon includes:

  • Kia's UVO System. Developed with Microsoft, this infotainment system is sort of Ford Sync Lite. A hands-free system, it can oversee operation of cell phones and music sources. It will feature a backup camera and a 4.3-inch color touch screen display and appear in the 2011 Kia Sorrento.
  • Infiniti's Lane Departure Warning and Prevention. Using a tiny camera behind the windshield to detect lane markers, this system alerts the driver to an unintended lane departure and will even nudge the vehicle back to safety. It is available in the 2011 M. Other manufacturers such as Mercedes-Benz and Audi feature similar systems.
  • Acura's Active Sound Control. Not unique to Acura, this system uses two microphones inside the cabin to monitor low-frequency engine noise. When noise is detected, the system transmits an opposing frequency through the audio system speakers, canceling out the engine noise. It is available on the TL and TSX.
  • Mercedes-Benz Splitview Technology. Because U.S. regulations prohibit front-seat passengers from viewing video media unless the vehicle is parked, Mercedes-Benz has developed a screen that displays two images: one over the top of the other. From the driver's perspective, only the navigation map is seen, while the passenger sees only the movie or whatever video has been programmed. It is available on the S-Class.
  • BMW's Car-to-car Communication. Using WLAN technology, this system communicates directly with all other relevant vehicles in the vicinity, allowing it to send warnings to vehicles behind it regarding traffic jams, black ice on the road or a sudden rain storm.
  • GM's Enhanced Head-up Display. Using a vehicle's full array of sensors and cameras, this system will create a full-windshield head-up display to aid drivers in extremely low visibility events. For example, in a fog situation the vehicle would use infrared cameras to identify the edges of the road and those lines would then be "painted" onto the windshield.
  • Audi's GPRS/EDGE. An optional modem for Audi's MMI navigation plus system will allow the user direct access to Google for points of interest. The results are displayed on the navigation map. It will be available in the 2011 Audi A8.

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