Electrification, autonomous cars and connectivity are reshaping the future of the car as we know it – but it’s Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) that are the real technological heroes.
In her keynote speech at the 2016 CES show, General Motors CEO Mary Barra said: “I have no doubt that the auto industry will change more in the next five to 10 years than it has in the last 50.”
ADAS might sound futuristic, but anyone who has driven a car made in the last 30 years will have benefited from the technology, from ABS brakes to ESP traction control systems. At its most basic, ADAS is designed to make cars safer and easier to drive – and the tech has become almost commonplace through regulation.
But as technology evolves, so too does the capability of ADAS systems and new features could revolutionize how we drive.
The ADAS market is ripe for growth, too. Some experts such as TechNavio predict the ADAS market will grow by 29% by 2022 with global revenues of $48 billion. And companies without a current presence in the automotive sector, such as Panasonic and Intel, are actively developing technology to play their part in this revolution.
ADAS features now and the future
Only one in four drivers who have ADAS really understand what it can do – and it can be a minefield understanding the different systems.
From blind spot monitoring to automatic emergency braking, lane keeping assistance to tire pressure monitoring, any new car you buy today will have some form of modern ADAS installed.
In bad weather, the specific roadway data that ADAS offers could enhance driver safety.
Most of the time, we don’t even know it’s there, with the technology working in the background to act as our second pair of eyes on the road. The most advanced systems can not only detect a problem, but actively help you avoid it, too – and will form the backbone of autonomous cars.
But the near future of ADAS looks even more exciting. Volvo Cars is working on a driver monitoring system that will be able to detect if you fall asleep at the wheel, or you’re impaired through drink or drugs. And the new Hyundai NEXO, for instance, will automatically park and retrieve itself from a parking space, without a driver in the car.
The Citroen DS7 Crossback has a night vision camera installed, to identify objects in the road when it’s dark and, while this tech has been on the Mercedes S-Class for a decade, it shows that even the most sophisticated ADAS systems are filtering down to more mainstream cars.
At HERE, we’re developing the next generation of in-car mapping technology. Even smart systems that can track lane markings to keep you straight can be affected by adverse weather conditions. In this video and this one, we see how a car’s camera sensor struggles to consistently find the lane lines in heavy rain. Yet, the right side of the screen shows how our map data helps the vehicle to stay safely in the center of the lane.
Could your ADAS be enhanced with roadway info and driving advice?
Our state-of-the-art maps will also display the lane markings on your car’s head-up display or navigation screen, allowing you to see where you’re going even if the road is covered in snow. Modern mapping tech can even allow you to take the most economic route allowing you to save fuel.
Continental recently announced that trucks equipped with its eHorizon product - which is powered by our maps and uses data like road geometry to provide an efficient solution - have saved over a billion liters of diesel and nearly three million tons of CO2.