The American car industry is making a great comeback after some lackluster years, in which daring innovation made American cars the best but was forgotten by the big three. Today, retro designs of classics as well, as new models with the latest technology, are making cars from Detroit something to be desired – not only here but around the world.
The new line of Ford vehicles come with the latest technology to enhance the driving experience, safety, security and enjoyment for the driver.
Information is at the heart of all new Ford vehicles. These models are constantly gathering data to improve how the vehicle performs with state-of-the-art sensing, computing and communications systems.
The next evolution of automobile technology will be in driver assistance and mobile device connectivity.
To gather the large amount of data from vehicles like the 2013 Fusion will have 145 actuators, 4,716 signals and 74 sensors. This will include accelerometers, cameras, radar, sonar, temperature and rain sensors, as well as other tools.
The amount of information created by these sensors is more than 25 gigabytes data per hour. The information is processed, analyzed and made available for the driver by more than 70 on-board computers.
Everything from alerting the driver from other vehicles to parking assistance is possible with this vehicle.
"The new Fusion sedan demonstrates how we're making the car smarter using attainable and affordable technology and thus helping create a better driver. Fusion features an unprecedented level of sensors for its driver assist technologies, machine learning techniques to deliver more electric-only driving on the hybrids, and innovative graphical interfaces to help coach drivers to be as fuel efficient as possible. Technology is enabling Ford to bring a new level of awareness and intelligence that will dramatically enhance our customers' time behind the wheel," said Paul Mascarenas, vice president and chief technical officer at Ford.
According to Mascarenas future technologies that could be available in Ford vehicles include:
- Real-time Big Data analysis using real-time sensor data to increase driver safety
- OpenXC research an open-source platform which will allow innovation from users just like software companies
- Cloud ecosystems that will permit easy integration for the increasing mobile ecosystem
- Smart vehicles with the capability of learning driving habits to maximize mileage and conserve energy until vehicles are charged based on location
Other innovations include biometric sensors embedded in cars seats to detect stress levels, driver behavior predictor and rapid vehicle-to-vehicle communication to avoid collisions.
While this insight gives us a glimpse at what Ford is exploring, the nature of the automobile industry is such that the applications may never see the day of light. Just like the concept cars in auto-shows, it looks and sounds great, but it has to be economically feasible so it can be adopted in future vehicles.
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Edited by Braden Becker