In the recent past, the automotive industry has seen a lot of changes and even more are coming along every day. We have seen innovation and technology come together to result in the advent of alternative fuels, lightweight materials and incredibly advanced technology getting incorporated in current automobiles. This transformation is impacting on not just vehicle manufacturing but also how we view cars and ultimately how we drive them as well. So what’s bound to make headlines in 2017?
1. Rearview Cameras
This is such a huge future that it is set to become mandatory in all light vehicles starting from 2018, and If you are buying a new car in 2017 chances are that you shall find it already installed. It’s only a matter of time before side-view and aerial-view cameras become mandatory as well.
2. Autonomous Functions
Well, automobiles are yet to become fully self-driven but you may want to look out for semi-autonomous functions such as driver-assist systems, adaptive cruise control technology, and emergency braking. Owing to the increase in smartphone users even behind the wheel, you will be glad to own a semi-autonomous car or at the very least have GKBM provide you with a competent car accident lawyer.
3. Better User Interface
Knobs and buttons are slowly getting replaced by hand gestures, touchscreens, capacitive touch and voice control. All this is meant to better the user experience but not to mean that buttons and knobs shall be phased out altogether – at least not for now.
4. Crossovers are in
Perhaps it’s because of their versatility or their fuel efficiency as compared to SUVs, whatever the reason, crossovers have definitely become more popular particularly in the past year. According to Car and Driver, even automakers are progressing towards making more crossovers to meet the growing demand.
5. New Materials
Material innovation aims at coming up with automobiles that are faster and ultra-lightweight while still being tough and crash resistant. Manufacturing plants with several manufacturing stations such as Tesla’s are about to become the norm as opposed to those with just a traditional sequential line.
6. More Electric Vehicles
Not too long ago gasoline used to be the ubiquitous fuel. This has however now given way to diesel, hybrids that require a plug-in and those that don’t; full electrics better known as EVs and even hydrogen in the case of fuel-cell vehicles. EVs are here to stay and with the installation of even more charging stations, their popularity is just about to increase.
7. Internet Connectivity
As proven by Ubers, cars and smartphones are beginning to have a lot in common all of which is made possible by internet connectivity. This is not going to stop there, according to The Washington Post all cars on the road will be able to digitally communicate with one another starting 2020.
8. Satellite Navigation System
If you were previously ignoring your satellite navigation system and using road signs instead then you might want to re-acquaint yourself with your sat-nav. This is set to be a big thing such that starting 2017, it shall be included in driving tests as opposed to before where it was banned.
9. Revival of Older Models
Popular old models are set to see a revamp starting with Toyota’s 2018 Camry, Ford’s F-150 pickup truck and the Ford Bronco set to make a comeback in 2020. The idea is to re-introduce these popular cars with designs that are more streamlined as well as having better in-car technology.
10. Better Purchasing deals
Last year, in particular, saw many automakers make large sales owing to the fact that they offered attractive discounts, longer payback terms and interest rates that were more competitive as compared to previous years. The trend of better deals is set to continue into 2017 as long as buyers are just as willing to make purchases.
The above factors clearly make 2017 a year to look forward to in the automobile industry and things are only bound to get more exciting.