technology

technology

  New technologies are everywhere and especially in our cars: ABS, airbags, lane change detection, GPS and more...

When it comes to driving, there are two things I can’t live without. A nice pair of lightweight shoes and my sunglasses. The shoes are there to assist with speed and feeling when driving a car quickly, and the sunglasses are there for basically everything else.

Your eyes are easily your most important sense for driving, and with large collections of LCD screens everywhere in the cabin, ultra-gloss metallic paints reflecting glare at every chance, your eyes are constantly being attacked. Rather than simply use a standard tint to help protect your eyes, a new premium lens has been released called Unity. Unity lenses promise the best of polarization technology, along with new performance features like outdoor, blue-light protection.

Unity says that their lenses block 100 percent of UVA and UVB rays, provide enhanced clarity and contrast, plus they will reduce eye fatigue. Thanks to that fancy blue-light filter, they will apparently also help prevent macular degeneration over time.

I have spent the last several years wearing a set of polarized Oakleys and felt like nothing in the world could beat them. Unity took up that gauntlet and set me up with a few glasses in different styles with slightly different tints so I could test their claims against my go-to Oakley sunglasses.

Are all these fancy buzz words and medical claims legitimate, or is Unity just one more name cast into the world of sunglasses trying to grab your attention?

Read on to see if the Unity lenses stand up to their marketing claims.

Jaguar Land Rover is touting its new self-learning technology system integrated into and between the driver’s smartphone and a so-equipped Jaguar or Land Rover vehicle. The system works by learning intimate information about the driver, like schedule patterns, radio and climate control preferences, and even phone call patterns in order to accurately predict what task the driver might want to do next.

For example, the driver’s phone communicates with the driver’s shiny, new Range Rover that it’s Tuesday morning and little Johnny will need to attend soccer practice at the country club at 9 a.m. The Range Rover then figures out the best route for the journey, checks for any traffic obstructions, and then messages the driver the optimal time to leave for practice.

On the way to little Johnny’s soccer practice, the radio knows to play Johnny’s favorite radio station. Once he’s left the vehicle, the radio automatically changes to the driver’s preferred radio selection. But lets say practice runs long and dad will be 10 minutes late to work. No worries, as his Range Rover will message his boss alerting him of the delay.

Of course, this sort of technology seems rather interesting. It’s currently perhaps the ultimate way to be connected to the grid. Integration of smartphones and calendar events to personal preferences in the car is automatic. It might be the future, but boy, is it invasive.

Currently there’s no word on when this technology will become available in Jaguar Land Rover products, but from the look of things, it’s not far off.

Click past the jump for the full press release

Imagine if you could have a full video-game-style heads-up display in your car. Every detail from speed, track layout, and other pertinent information could be displayed in real time without you needing to take your eyes off the road. Imagine if you could even have your Forza Motorsports -style optimal racing line, complete with braking zone indication presented to you on your windshield in a form of augmented reality. Wouldn’t that be amazing?

Well it appears that Jaguar is working on bringing this exact technology to life.

More than the already amazing feats we discussed, Jaguar wants to push it so far as to offer a "ghost car" display so that when on a track you can focus on racing yourself or maybe even a friend’s previous best time. It is the ultimate combination of video games and real life.

If that wasn’t futuristic enough, Jaguar is working on a tracking technology that will control the system through gestures and eye movements so you never need to mess with button and switches. If properly implemented this form of input could be quicker, more accurate and less distracting than traditional tactile switches.

You can learn even more about what Jaguar has planned for this new system and see a video of it in action after the break.

Hit the Jump to find out more about Jaguar’s new Virtual Windscreen.

It’s been six years since Jaguar and Land Rover left the Ford ownership umbrella, but the British automakers are still using Ford-derived engines they inherited back in the late 1990s. That’s about to change though, as the Brits are set to introduce a new family of efficient powerplants. Dubbed Ingenium, these new engines promise to deliver a compelling combination of power, efficiency, and low CO2 emissions in many shapes and sizes.

Built in-house at the company’s new engine facility in Wolverhampton, England, the first version of the modular unit family is set to debut in the upcoming Jaguar XE and find its way into the Land Rover Discovery a few months after that. The Ingenium family will include both gasoline and diesel variants with turbochargers attached to them. As with all modular engines, JLR’s new powerplants will share many internals and calibration strategies, enabling the company to raise quality and simplify manufacturing.

Looks like Jaguar Land Rover is finally growing up!

Click past the jump to read more about Jaguar’s new Ingenium Engine Family.

Sometimes when you set out to prove something, the proof often times just isn’t enough for some folks. Naysayers and slanderers just eat your lunch. So it seems Hyundai has taken the extra step – or six in this case – to ensure the car-conscious public is well aware of the 2015 Genesis ’ latest convenience safety features.

So to demonstrate the Genesis’ Advanced Smart Cruise Control and Lane Keeping Assist system, Hyundai hired stunt driver Buddy Joe to lead the pack of driverless, yes driverless, Genesis sedans around an oval loop then subject them to a rather sudden stop. But executing the driverless car situation was a little more involved than one might think.

Lined up one after another, the drivers of all six Genesis sedan turned on both the smart cruise control and the lane keeping function before proceeding to exit the vehicle. Yep, the stunt drivers make use of the Genesis’ generous panoramic sunroof by climbing through it, only to jump to a moving semi truck pulled along side.

Without spoiling all the video’s fun, I can say it’s a pretty impressive stunt that seems hard to fake. The cars all followed each other perfectly (though seemingly at slow speeds) until the semi truck slammed on its brakes. Driverless, each car came to a complete stop without nary an issue. Nicely done, Hyundai. I’m impressed.

Click past the jump for a glimpse behind the scenes of Hyundai’s stunt.

When you spend all your time driving new cars, you get kind of spoiled with features and amenities. From backup cameras and GPS to voice-controlled radio and more, driving a new car is pretty great. All that technology can make driving easier, but it can also be very distracting. A new company called Skully has created an advanced motorcycle helmet that adds all those features into your head protection, but is that setup going to make riders safer, or will it be more distracting and dangerous, especially for new riders?

As a new rider who just bought my first motorcycle, I am excited by the idea of having all my favorite amenities available to me when I’m only using two wheels instead of four, but will having so much visual and aural stimulation cause me to pay less attention than I should?

I am obviously not an expert on the subject, but I have a few thoughts. I was hoping that you, the wonderful readers of TopSpeed could help me out. Is this helmet a good idea or not?

Read on to find out what I like and what worries me about the Skully AR-1

It’s no longer a secret that the 2015 Mustang is one of the most technologically advanced vehicles to come out of Detroit. It also represents huge step in Mustang history and brings many firsts to the 50-year-old pony. The sixth-gen model is the first Mustang — sans the Cobra model in years past — to gain an independent rear suspension that promises to improve its handling on both the street and track.

The new suspension will also move the Mustang closer to European competitors like the BMW M4 , an important switch now that the muscle car is ready to hit the Old Continent on official terms. What’s more, the 2015 Mustang is the first pony to adopt a more familiar look in the Ford lineup, as the company’s trademark, trapezoidal grille makes its way onto the nose.

Then there’s the 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine. Sure, this isn’t the first time a Mustang gets a turbocharged four-banger — it happened back in the 1980s too — but it comes in a era in which fuel economy and CO2 emissions are crucial in just about every market except the Middle East . And let’s not forget about the line-lock system , a gimmick that allows drivers to perform burnouts without destroying the car’s clutch. We also call this button the "warranty eliminator," as pressing it allows Ford to assume you raced the Mustang, resulting in dealers having reason to void your warranty.

As impressive as it may sound, the 2015 Mustang is set to receive even more innovative features, one of which is an industry-first on a production car.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Ford Mustang Safety Systems.

Audi just became more appealing to technophiles today after the company announced its integration of Google’s Android Auto, which was unveiled today at Google’s I/O annual technologies conference in San Francisco. Like Apple’s CarPlay, Android Auto will combine the user’s smartphone with their car’s in-dash infotainment system in a seamless manner that’s conducive for safe driving free of distractions.

Audi’s integration of Android Auto means a lot of new voice controls for Google Play Music, Google Maps, and other functions. Video and multimedia, along with text-rich items won’t be displayed while the car is in motion, but will become available when in Park.

The system comes alive when an Android smartphone is connected to a compatible Audi. A prompt appears asking if the user wants to display their apps through the MMI system. Once chosen to do so, the system basically uses the MMI screen as an interface for the smartphone. Audio streams and microphone inputs are all routed through the car.

What’s more, Audi says the Android Auto system will be available within a number of 2015 model year vehicles, meaning Android Auto-equipped Audis will be roaming the streets starting sometime this fall. Of course Audi ensures that Android Auto-equipped car will not prohibit users from connecting non-Android smartphones like iPhones or Blackberries, but the full functionality of the system won’t be accessible.

Click past the jump to read more about Audi’s Android Auto Connection.

Kazunori Yamauchi is the creative genius and mastermind behind the entire Gran Turismo franchise. For 20 years he has been creating one of the greatest simulation racers of all time. He is currently hanging out at Goodwood with Nissan ’s chief designer Shiro Nakamura to reveal the Concept 2020 Vision Gran Turismo car, and they decided to hop onto Reddit to do an Ask Me Anything (AMA).

While sadly I wasn’t informed in time to get any questions in, I can at least dig through for all the good parts and collect them here for you. They field questions about Gran Turismo as a whole, talk about features they want to add to Gran Turismo 7, and of course they also talk about racing, cars and the experience of Goodwood.

Some of the real highlights include the addition of the Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge to the Gran Turismo games, the possible inclusion of custom tracks like El Capitan and Nissan even muses about the idea of a Nismo-tuned Titan pickup.

You can find all the big questions and their respective answers collected below.

Read on to find out all the questions and answers from today’s Reddit AMA

Source: Reddit

Audi has apparently been working on an innovative way to harness lost energy in the form of heat within conventional shock absorbers. The news comes by way of a conversation AutoExpress had with Audi’s Research and Development chief Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg. This means by replacing the standard shock absorber units with generator systems, the car will generate electricity as it bumps down the road.

“When working hard over a bumpy road, the dampers are perhaps 100 to 125 degrees.,” Hackenberg tells AutoExpress. “This energy is wasted as heat into the atmosphere.” Though specific details of the technology are still unknown, capturing that energy is likely to happen with a rotating generator unit inside the suspension dampers. When the suspension is compressed, the generator produces electricity.

That power can then be sent into a hybrid car ’s battery systems for powering the vehicle. Conversely, the power could be used more immediately to power ancillary systems like electronics and HVAC controls.

What’s more, Hackenberg hinted at the system’s implementation into performance cars as well. “Because we can send energy back into the damper, you will have an independently variable suspension.” This will be able to counter act body roll through tight corners.

Click past the jump to read more about Audi’s power-generating suspension system.

Source: AutoExpress

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