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Emergency Automatic Brakes to Soon Become an Industry- Standard for Automobiles

Monthly Archives: September 2015

Emergency Automatic Brakes to Soon Become an Industry- Standard for Automobiles

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With an aim to make driving safe than ever, the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration), an agency of the Executive Branch of the U.S. government and part of the Department of Transportation, has secured a commitment from a diverse group of renowned automakers, like—General Motors, Toyota and Volkswagen, to manufacture all new vehicles integrated with automatic brakes as a standard feature. This initiative is aimed at making automatic emergency braking an industry wide standard.

The NHTSA and its private-sector counterpart, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), have reached an agreement to speed up the implementation of this promising technology without any hindrance.

The automatic emergency braking system includes sensors—radar, cameras or lasers, that could detect an imminent collision and apply the brakes automatically in no time. This crash-prevention technology could be a boon to the leading suppliers in that market, including Delphi, Magna, Bosch, Continental, ZF TRW and Mobileye.

The automakers in the pact “have committed to an important principle: AEB is a life-saving technology that should be available to every vehicle owner,” NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind said in a statement Friday, Sept. 11, adding: “We encourage every other manufacturer to join this effort.”

“There’s always going to be a need for regulations to keep public safe,” Rosekind said Friday during a ceremony at the IIHS’ newly expanded research center here, and those regulatory efforts will continue. “The industry, in this case though, hasn’t waited for regulation.”

The technology is widely available on modern cars, but many automakers serve it as a part of option package that increases vehicle’s price by thousands of dollars.

The UK Government Extends the Grant on Plug-in Cars Till February 2016

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The UK government has extended the £5000 grant for plug-in car buyers till February 2016. This decision is taken to encourage sales of eco-friendly plug-in cars in the UK. As per this scheme, the government offers £5000 off from the price of cars that fall in the category of being Ultra Low Emission Vehicles—commonly known as ULEV.

Initially, the grant was valid until 50,000 electric vehicles will get registered in the UK–a figure that is expected to be achieved by November 2015. Now, the government has decided to extend the scheme so that more car buyers head toward buying eco-friendly electrically run cars and vans.

As per the scheme, all-electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles having CO2 emissions of 75g/km or below are eligible for this grant.

This government-backed campaign covers a wide range of cars, including city cars and superminis—Volkswagen e-up; Renault Zoe; family cars—Audi A3 e-tron® and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV; and sports cars—Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid and BMW i8. The range is to encircle fuel cell electric vehicles—hydrogen-powered Toyota Mirai among others—in future.

The main motive of driving this campaign is to position Britain as a world leader in the ultra-low emission technology. A minimum of £200 million is available for further grants; such whopping grant will prove to be an impetus for more and more people to opt for low emission motoring.

Transport minister Andrew Jones said: “The UK is now the fastest growing market for electric vehicles in Europe. We will continue to invest to help make this technology affordable to everyone and to secure the UK’s position as a global leader.” Now, citizens’ support to securing the Mother Nature is the last element that is required to make the project a remarkable success.

Start, Lock and Locate your Car with your Smartphone

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If you own a Mazda and a smartphone, there is good news for you; now, you can start or stop your car, locate it and lock or unlock simply with the help of an application.

Entering into the world of digital applications, Mazda—a Japanese automaker—is introducing a new mobile app that is named as Mazda Mobile Start. The app’s User Interface (UI) and functioning are akin to a remote control. This application allows you to set car alarm; along with all these features, the app can help you to keep tabs on the location of your Mazda while you are away.

The app is the best choice whenever you wish activating your car’s climate control operations. Once idle for or up to 30 minutes, the app will shut down the car automatically. In addition, the app will have a specific timer showing the total time for which your Mazda has run.

The app’s UI displays a virtual key to lock and unlock the car. Further, with the app, you can activate the panic alarm, the horn and the hazard lights in case there is an emergency.

The application is integrated with Carfinder—a tool that helps you to locate your car in no time by using your phone’s camera along with the GPS.

“Mazda Mobile Start comes with more than just the features and functions of the app; it also comes with peace of mind,” said Trisha Quezada, manager of accessories, sales and marketing at Mazda North America. “Mazda Mobile Start was created with convenience and safety in mind to enhance the overall driving experience that matters so much to our customers.”

For the time being, the application is available in the US only. It is available for free for the first year only; afterwards, users will have to shell out a subsequent subscription fee of USD 65 per annum. Along with this, you have to get hardware or a few kits fitted in your vehicle to ensure that the app functions properly.

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Audi plans to create ‘Moon Rover’ to touch down on the moon

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Audi AG—a German automobile manufacturer—has joined hands with a group, the Part-Time Scientists, to engineer a moon rover. The automobile company is going to take part in Google’s Lunar XPRIZE competition. In the competition, a total of 15 teams have to build a robot that can successfully land on the moon’s surface, drive almost 500 meters and, then, send high-definition recordings of the heavenly body back to Earth. And the team that would successfully complete the mission will be awarded with $30 million.

“The concept of a privately financed mission to the moon is fascinating,” says Luca de Meo, an Audi AG board member for Sales and Marketing. He further adds, “And innovative ideas need supporters that promote them. We want to send a signal with our involvement with the Part-Time Scientists and also motivate other partners to contribute their know-how.”

According to Audi USA, once the project is complete, it will be transported in a launching rocket with the expected travel time to be around five days and will travel over 238,000 miles. The rover will land just north of the moon’s quarter.

With this initiative, the German manufacturer is supporting its partner group to come with new advancements in a variety of fields including Quattro all-wheel drive, piloted driving and lightweight construction. Formed by Robert Böhme—an information tech consultant in Berlin—the group has around 35 members, generally consisting of Austrians and Germans.

About the competition

The Google Lunar XPRIZE (GLXP) or Moon 2.0 is an independent prize space competition, which is organized by a foundation called X Prize Foundation and is sponsored by Google. The competition calls for privately funded spaceflight teams in order to develop a robotic spacecraft that land, travel across the Moon’s surface and send its images back to Earth.

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