Cars.com has published a thought-provoking article on the shape of car tech over the next 10 years. Based on analysis of news articles and industry trends, the report looks at technologies that are breaking into the market, in development, or are still Jetsonian pipe dreams. Perhaps most notable is the time frame that the report gives for each of its featured technologies. According to its assessments:
Within two years we can expect to see: keyless fingerprint entry and ignition systems; adaptive brake lights that increase in brightness according to brake force; centralized computer centers to manage all cabin tech systems; collision mitigation systems; auto black boxes; and built-in economy modes for fuel-efficient driving.
In the next three years look out for lane-change warnings; camless engines (for increased air-intake efficiency); self-repairing, self-cleaning paint; and navigation systems with integrated real-time traffic data.
Beyond that there is the prospect of self-parking cars; automatically tinting windows; advanced flex-fuel systems that can run on gas, ethanol, diesel, or a mixture of the all three; and the ultimate car tech grail of self-driving production cars.
The interesting thing about this assessment is that some of the advances that the article sees as a long way off (self-parking, integration of real-time traffic in nav systems) have already made it into production, while others that it sees as coming soon (fingerprint ignition) are still largely conceptual.
Nevertheless, it's an interesting read, and a good roundup of the things that will be keeping us in column inches for the next few years.