Every year in January, the titans of the tech industry converge in Las Vegas, Nevada for the annual Consumer Electronics Show. At this industry event, thousands of tech companies come to show off their latest products and innovations.
The growing demand for high-tech connected automobiles has resulted in many of the world’s biggest automakers joining the show. Manufacturers such as Audi, Mercedes-Benz, and Toyota were on site to show off their newest automotive technologies. Here is a quick look at some of the things we saw at CES 2015.
Mercedes-Benz F 015 concept car This Mercedes concept car is a cutting-edge example of an autonomous car – one that can completely drive itself! The car is powered by an electric drive system with a hydrogen fuel cell, which will deliver up to 1,100 km (683 miles) of zero-emission driving.
Every year in January, the world’s consumer electronics companies congregat in Las Vegas at the International CES Show to show off their latest and greatest products. Everything from digital cameras and tablet computers to washing machines and televisions are on display.
In past years, car manufacturers occupied a small part of the show to demonstrate the latest in-vehicle technologies. For 2014, automotive companies reserved 140,000 square feet of floor space for their booths – a 20% increase compared to 2013!
Here are some of the top automotive headlines from CES 2014:
Audi Introduces Self-Driving Car
Audi was at CES 2014 demonstrating a self-driving car, which uses a combination of RADAR, LASER, and imaging technologies to be aware of its surroundings. Last year, the car’s entire hatch was filled with computers to process this information. This year, it’s been shrunk down to a computer in the trunk no bigger than an iPad. Audi calls their new technology “piloted driving,” and it looked very close to production-ready on this A7 sedan.
If the name Ken Block doesn’t sound familiar to you, you might want to get to a computer and search YouTube for the word “Gymkhana.” Mr. Block has popularized the sport of gymkhana, which is sort of like gymnastics for your car.
Think of Gymkhana (jim-kah-nuh) as a more advanced version of autocross. In traditional autocross, drivers hone their skills by trying to set the best time around a track while avoiding obstacles such as cones. With Gymkhana, the goal is the same, however the courses are much more challenging and require precise moves such as drifting, 180-degree and 360 degree spins, figure 8s, and all sorts of other automotive acrobatics.
At the 2013 CES show, I spotted a concept car that really pushes the technology envelope. It features energy-efficient lighting, is powered by a hydrogen fuel cell, and has more screens than Best Buy. But perhaps the most surprising thing about this car is that it’s a Hyundai.
The Hyundai Genesis Blue2 is a concept car that is built around Hyundai’s MediaLink system, which brings smart capabilities like Bluetooth 3.0, Internet radio, and a full web browser to the driver’s seat.
It is 2013 and the world still does not have jetpacks, Star Trek Replicators, or time machines. But before you give up on your dreams of a high-tech future, listen to what Lexus has just come out with. Their Integrated Safety team was on hand at this year’s CES Show in Las Vegas to show off a self-driving car.
You may remember that I wrote about Google’s Self-Driving Prius as part of my SEMA 2012 coverage. This car works in much the same way as Google’s car: it relies on a multitude of sensors and instruments to safely navigate its way to your destination.
There is an astonishing amount of technology present in today’s automobiles. Everything from transmissions to traction control, stability control, and other vehicle monitoring systems are all controlled by onboard computers. Therefore, it makes sense that General Motors would showcase its latest gadgets not at an auto show, but at the 2013 International CES show.
CES is the world’s largest trade show, drawing thousands of engineers, geeks, and tech-minded people from all over the world. Here, GM was showing off its latest in-car infotainment system called MyLink. The MyLink system won a CES Innovation Award for 2013 and was available for demonstrations throughout the show.