Intelligent Transportation Superhighway: roadmap to future

Intelligent Transportation Superhighway: roadmap to future

Everybody is curious about connected and self-driving cars, and Washington Auto Show visitors to the Intelligent Transportation Superhighway, at the show, got answers.

Sponsored by the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, the Superhighway was designed to help show goers understand what they were seeing. And a centerpiece of this was a free publication WANADA distributed entitled, The New Mobility Guide: The Auto Industry of the Future, by veteran auto writer Warren Brown, the syndicated columnist whose column appears weekly in The Washington Post. The guide breaks down in easy-to-understand terms the changes already being made with fully autonomous vehicles.

Eventually, Brown writes, these cars –will be able to drive themselves without input from a motorist.” They will do that by communicating with transportation infrastructure and with each other, eventually eliminating the need for things like stoplights. Several automakers and NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind at the Auto Showês Industry/Media Day have spoken of the urgency of bringing down the number of traffic deaths 32,675 in 2014. With autonomous cars, the aim is eventually to have no deaths.

Advanced safety features are no longer just on luxury cars. Safety is a right, not an option, Brown writes. Consumer and government forces are making safety items such as forward collision warning, lane departure warning and low-speed adaptive cruise control available in lower priced cars such as the Honda Civic and Nissan Sentra.

Another trend noted by Brown and on display on the Superhighway: automakersê success to date in removing weight from a vehicle without sacrificing its essential strength or safety. The BMW 7-series vehicles do this well, and Brown predicts that similar technologies will be available in less expensive models.

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