The future of the automobile is one that will always be in question. Images of the Jetsons flying around in their vehicles, Michael J. Fox on a hoverboard, and self-driving cars like those in the movie I, Robot are just a few that may come to mind. Well, we may not be close to flying around in our respective cars, but companies are making strides toward a more autonomous driving experience. Automotive giant Toyota is one participant, but while some may desire a car that drives itself, Toyota believes in the importance of driver control.
In its latest technological advancement into the automotive universe, Toyota is going to be demonstrating high-tech safety features at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas that may soon become reality. The vehicle itself may look like a normal car with a bunch of bells and whistles, but rest assured, this is some futuristic stuff.
Featuring cameras, and lasers, and sensors (oh my!), the Advanced Safety Research Vehicle is equipped with enough technology to make the Jetsons’ robot maid Betty jealous. All of the pieces combine to detect objects surrounding the vehicle, upcoming traffic lights, intersections, and vehicle behavior nearly instantaneously. And those are just a few of the features. The goal, however, is not to make the car drive on its own.
“While key components of these research efforts could lead to a fully autonomous car in the future, the vision is not necessarily a car that drives itself,” a Toyota statement read. “Instead, Toyota and Lexus envision technologies that enhance the skills of the driver, believing a more skillful driver is a safer driver.”
Even communication and interaction between vehicles on the road is a part of the latest safety development from Toyota. Although we may continue to dream of a vehicle that will drive us to the grocery store and back without us touching the wheel, the advancements from Toyota will have to do for now. Besides, who doesn’t want to be in control of their vehicle, with a little help from their Camry or Sienna co-pilot?