Department of Transportation Wants Your Car to Stop for Your Safety
Are you ready for your car to stop for you? That's what the Department of Transportation wants to find out, and possibly crash a few cars in the process. The federal agency has asked volunteers to test-drive several vehicles equipped with what is called "vehicle-to-vehicle" communication technology (V2V). Such technology allows the vehicles to "talk" with each other via wireless technology. Bristling with sensors, the test vehicles keep both their driver and fellow vehicles aware of their surroundings and, if necessary, react to it. The DOT test involves gauging the volunteers' reaction when the V2V technology stops their vehicle in panic situations, like another vehicle crossing in front of them. While some high-end cars are currently equipped with sensors and computer-directed braking, none currently communicate with each other. The federal agency is recruiting 100 volunteers for the program, which will run in closed tracks in Michigan; Dallas; San Francisco; Orlando; Minnesota; and Virginia. Carmakers such as Ford, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Toyota, and Volkswagen are participating as well, with several conducting a similar test in Germany involving 300 volunteers. Automakers plan to use the data from both the DOT and German test to decide what warning system works best with consumers. Source: Automotive News (Subscription required)
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