|There are more cars on the road than ever before, and with advances in technology over the past hundred years they are now more fuel efficient and safer than ever, but what does the future hold for our cars?
YourParkingSpace have researched some of the up and coming technologies that could one day feature on our vehicles and have come up with a fascinating infographic of how this technology could be implemented.
Over the past few years we have already started to see technology become common place on cars with electronic safety systems and internet connected systems, but what other technologies could be implemented on the cars of the future. Check out the infographic below to find out:
Getting into a car accident could be the worst thing to happen, especially if you’re out with the latest trendiest car on the market. The public embarrassment and the costs of fines and damages can be easily avoided by following these simple rules to prevent an accident.
- Drive careful in heavy traffic
Remember that rear view mirrors don’t show the complete picture. Especially when driving at a busy intersection, keep a careful watch out for drivers that can pop up out of nowhere. Be extra careful when driving in rainy weather because the car may not respond as quickly.
- Remember that people will run a red light
Even if you’re a very conscientious and careful driver, remember that not everybody is like that. Even when driving into an intersection on a green light, be extra vigilant for people running a red light from the opposite direction or from your left or right. If you spot a heavy vehicle anywhere in the traffic, remember that they might not be able to spot you.
- Never let go of the steering wheel
Never, ever let go of the steering wheel under any circumstances. If you need to use both hands to take a call or for some other reason, it is better to drive up to the side and stop the car. As accident experts like Pottroff&Karlin regularly advise, even taking your hands off the steering wheel for a moment can result in an unfortunate accident if your car simply slides into the next lane.
- Keep a lookout for animals and kids
Kids and animals tend to dart across the road when you are least expecting it. Not having sharp senses can be a real misfortune in these cases. Especially when driving near a school, zoo or wildlife park, keep a watch out for kids and animals who could come out of nowhere. A much better option is to slow down your speed when driving past such areas.
- Get your car checked regularly
Regular car maintenance goes a long way in helping to avoid accidents. Make sure that your engine is perfectly tuned, the brakes are performing well, and the tire treads are intact. If there are repairs to be done, get them done immediately instead of waiting for later. Any money you spend in keeping your car in top shape could save you thousands in an accident lawsuit.
- Practice good road manners
This is a simple tip but makes a lot of difference in maintaining road safety. Despite whatever hurry you might be in, always leave a reasonable cushion between you and the driver in front. Tailgating serves no useful purpose other than leading to unintentional accidents, arguments and damages. Be respectful of other drivers on the road and keep the road rage in check. Any rash action or loss of temper could lead to an accident.
A car is a significant investment and an integral part of your lifestyle. By following these six simple rules, you can reduce the risk of an accident greatly and get more excitement out of your car.
We get so used to paying out money when it comes to our cars, that it can often be hard to get our heads around the idea that we can actually make money from our cars too. Because we can. When you put a significant investment into buying or leasing your car, you may find that you’re not left with a lot else. And when this is the case, you could be in need of a few money making ideas and financing solutions. So why not think about turning to your car to make that happen? After all, it zapped up all of your cash in the first place. So let’s take a look at what you could consider doing to make that happen.
As A Taxi
Your first option is probably the most obvious of all. And if the image above hasn’t given it away (or the title), you could consider taxing. Although you may not want to get yourself a taxi driver’s license if you already have a full-time job, you might like to consider becoming an Uber or Lyft driver on the side. You could also offer lists to your friends if they’re happy to chuck you a few dollars here and there. And there’s also the option to sign up to become a driver for a courier service too!
Renting It Out
Next, you could also think about renting out your car. Of course, if you use it every day, this probably isn’t going to be an idea that you can realistically work with. But if you only use it half the time, or it sits in your driveway for the entire weekend, then you should definitely give this idea some serous thought. You could make a few hundred bucks each month whenever you’re not planning on using it.
Renting Out Your Garage
At the same time, you could also think about renting out your garage space. Whether you never use it, or you’ve got space for two cars and you only currently own one, why let that go to waste? You could find a friend or neighbor that’s looking to rent some garage space, and because you have some available, it could be the perfect way to make some extra cash.
For times when you’re really low on cash and you need funds, have you ever thought about how your car can help you? If you know you can pay back what you borrow when your next paycheck comes in, why not look into a loan service like 1800CarTitleLoan that you can use your car as collateral? As long as you know you’re good for the money, it’s a low-risk option to get the money you need.
Fixing It Up
And finally, if you’ve got an old car, or you’re happy to buy one, why not think about fixing it up? You can sell cars at a profit and look to make some incredible cash from it. If you’re good with mechanics and cars, this is going to be an ideal solution for you.
Car owners all over the world are concerned about the value of their vehicle. As soon as you purchase a new one, it drops sharply in value and over time, the value of your vehicle will continue to fall if you don’t maintain it properly. The way you look after your car and manage it will have a huge impact on its value, so here are a couple of simple ways to help you maintain the value of your vehicle.
- Keep your car in a secure location
It’s important to keep your car somewhere safe in order to protect it from theft, the elements and even dust. If there’s ever a time you’re not using your vehicle, make sure it’s kept safely guarded in a garage or at least with something to cover it. Scratches and scuffs can easily damage the paintwork, and it’s usually not worth repairing these before selling your car or trading it in for a new one. If you try to fix them with cheap solutions, then you’ll find yourself wasting more money and the end result won’t be worth the effort. If you’re going to sell your car in the future or simply want it to retain its value, then keep it in a secure location.
- Tint your windows
Few people know that car tinting is a great way to protect the interiors of your vehicles. In fact, cars with tinted windows generally fare better than those without tinted windows because UV light can’t penetrate the films, resulting in less damage to the interior upholstery. This can make the insides of your vehicle look brand new even after years of use (assuming you don’t damage them yourself) and go a long way to help retain value.
- Don’t smoke in your car
Many people smoke in their cars, but not only can cigarette smoke give your upholstery a foul odour, it can also dull the surfaces of your vehicle. Try and keep smoking away from your vehicle if possible. If you have to smoke, make sure your windows are rolled down the smoke and smells don’t bind to the interior of your vehicle. Cleaning out cigarette smoke can be incredibly expensive and time-consuming.
- Clean your car on a regular basis
Your vehicle can easily pick up grime, dirt and stains—especially on the interior of your vehicle. If you feel like your vehicle is dirty and needs a clean, then do it sooner rather than later. If you spill something, pull over the car and quickly clean it up. It can help to have cleaning tools in the boot of your vehicle so that you’re prepared to clean up any potential messes.
Trading in your vehicle is a fantastic way to finance a new vehicle, and your current car can be worth a lot more if you follow these simple tips. It doesn’t take much work to retain the value of your car—you just need to look after it like a proper vehicle and not treat it like a toy.
As we approach the end of 2017 and draw ever closer to the end of the 2010s as a whole, it
seems like car technology is advancing at a rate it never has before. Cars Are becoming safer, more and more packed with time and effort saving technology and better for the environment than we might have imagined possible even just a few years ago at the beginning of the decade.
Unfortunately, there are still plenty of car trends to groan about, many of which we’d all be glad to see the back of next year. Here are some of the most annoying:
Okay, so this one isn’t really a biggie, but it seems like, in the past few years, as cars have gotten technically better, they’ve also lost their personalities. Whereas in the 80s, we had cars in every color of the rainbow imaginable, now most of the vehicles on the road appear to be varying shades of black, gray and white. The good news, if you hate this trend for drab cars, is that things seem to be changing with even cheap car hire, who would traditionally have been a sea of black and gray, now offering more colorful options, and with the abundance of vinyl wrapping and paints that make brightening up the car easier, now becoming available. It can’t come soon enough because we were starting to die of boredom!
There’s no denying that automation has a bright future in the automobile industry, but its future lies in fully automated self-driving cars, not annoying beeping safety sensors, clunky self-braking, and adjustment systems and vibrating steering wheels that are more of a nuisance than anything else. Hopefully, car manufacturers will concentrate on creating totally self-driving aspect and, in the meantime, leave the pointless automation out of the average vehicle.
There is no excuse for new vehicles having clunky, inefficient button-based interfaces when the 21st Century s all about the touchscreen and the technology isn’t exactly difficult to implement. Whether it’s the buttons to control your radio, the HVAC system or your hands-free, it makes sense to have a touchscreen which is more streamlined and easy to use. Really, what are manufacturers who still use old-school interfaces thinking of?
Their Own Software
Obviously, cars may need to have their own software for some aspects of operation, but when it comes to things like playing the music from your phone through your car speakers, for example, competing software is surplus flows and, I’m, sure you’ll agree, very annoying. Car companies should be making it very simple for us all to sync our iPhone and Android devices with our cars and using their own software, which requires additional downloads and setup is not the way to do this. This is one minor, but very annoying trend that needs to be killed off asap.
I’m sure many of you will disagree, but to my mind, crossover vehicles like the Toyota RAV4 are boring, bland and unnecessary. Their popularity, like the popularity of drably colored cars, are contributing to duller roads and less interesting driving experiences.
What car trends would you like to see dead in the water come 2018?
If you are looking to get a new car, then where do you start? After choosing the make and model that you want, it is time to have a look at how much it is all going to cost you. Will this be something that you look to pay for in cash that you’ve saved, or from selling your old car? If you’re going to be upgrading, then it is likely that the latter won’t be an option for you. So what other avenues are there to go down?
For many people, getting your car on finance can be a good option for you. As long as you’ve worked out the overall payments and know that you can repay it each month, then it is definitely something to look at. You can even see it as an investment, because if you needed cash later in the future, some lenders like Loan Center will even class your car, when fully owned (or nearly fully owned), as equity. So if you’re in a position to do so, then finance could work for you. What else do you need to know before going down the finance route, though? Here are some tips to help.
Understand Your Credit Score
For any kind of loan, you will have your credit score checked. But even if you have bad credit, then you are more likely to get finance on a car than a traditional loan. Why? The dealership or bank can quite easily take the car back off you to get the cash back should they need to. But because they know this, they are likely to give those with bad credit a much higher interest rate to pay back. So check what your credit score is before you go in. If your score is over 700, then you’re likely to get a pretty good interest rate. But if it isn’t, you don’t want to end up paying nearly double for your car if you don’t need to.
Keep the Term Short
When you sit down with the dealership and talk about what the repayments will be, then you can check various scenarios to check what the best will be for you. If it means paying a higher monthly amount but paying for three years rather than four, for example, then it can totally be worth doing. You don’t want to pay lots of interest, so keep the loan term short.
Put Down a Deposit
If you have an old car to sell, then you can use that as part of a deposit. A good amount to think about is putting down around 20% as a deposit. So if you’re looking at getting a $40,000 car, then you need to have around $8,000 to put down as deposit. If there is no way that you can get that for your old car, then it might be time to look for a cheaper new car. You don’t want to buy more car that you can afford.
In the early part of the 1900s, virtually all cars and trucks had 6 Volt electrical systems. In other words, the battery was a 6 Volt battery, the starter was a 6 Volt starter, and all the accessories operated on 6 Volts. Back then, a 6 volt system was perfectly capable of powering everything in the cars and trucks of the day.
But things changed in the 1950s. Things like power windows, power seats, power antennas, radios, air conditioning and other accessories started to appear. And, unfortunately, this caused a problem for engineers who needed an electrical system that could power all these accessories.
The “more power” solution came from General Motors who in 1954 offered the first 12 Volt system in their Cadillac Series 62 models. The rest of the American car industry quickly followed suit and within a few years every passenger car and truck made in the US had a 12 Volt electrical system. The results for the consumer were significant. Lynch Chevrolet of Mukwonago, a local Chevrolet dealer in Mukwonago, WI, tells us that vehicles with 12 Volt systems were simply better. The started faster and multiple accessories, like the radio and AC could be used at the same time.
Today, though, we are at another point where we need more power. Today’s cars offer a buffet of new electronic technology and the car engines themselves, which traditionally used little electrical power, now have lots of electrically powered components (power steering, power cams, power water pumps, etc).
So, wouldn’t a simple solution be to just beef up the existing 12 Volt system? Maybe with larger alternators and more batteries? Let’s do a little math and see how it all adds up. Take all the power consumed by all the electrical accessories in a new car -the power windows, the defroster, the heated seats, etc. – and the total will probably be between some 1.5 and 2.0 kilowatts of power needed. To supply 2.0 kilowatts of power, a standard alternator must be capable of churning out more than 140 amps. Not a problem, especially with the new water-cooled designs. But size up an alternator to feed the 3.0 kilowatts of power expected in cars built later this decade, and you’re looking at 200 amps. This is an entirely different matter because that requires a really big alternator and heavy wiring to allow all those amps to flow around.
So, as any electrical technician will tell you, to drop the cable and alternator size issues, one simply needs to increase the voltage of the system. More volts means less amps are needed. The number being thrown around currently is 42 Volts. It has been calculated that 48 Volt systems would be just about right to power the complex demands of future automobiles.
Several car companies are already building cars with 48 Volt systems. The Bentley Bentayga has a 48 Volt system to drive an electrically-driven sway bar system, and Audi is using a 48 Volt system to power the industry’s first electric supercharger. We should be seeing many more cars going to 48 Volt systems too.
As more and more accessories and engine components become electrically powered, we should see a boost in system voltages. It will probably be another year or so and we should be seeing 48 Volts systems on American cars.
In the early 1950s, Chrysler released a new engine design that would end up taking the automotive world by storm. It was a relatively standard V8 engine block but it had a new type of cylinder head design and valve train layout. This new engine came to be called a “Hemi” because the combustion chamber head was hemispherical (semi-circular) in shape. Chrysler’s first version of the Hemi engine displaced 331 cubic inches and offered the highest horsepower to weight ratio being made.
A few years later, in 1955, Chrysler debuted a new sedan called the 300. It was developed by Virgil Exner, a new stylist hired by Chrysler Corporation. Exner’s designs were radical for the time; they were basically simple and void of the excessive chrome that most mid-50s cars had. Chrysler dubbed the new designs their new “Forward Look.” Exner claimed the Forward Look designs was influenced by the tailfins on the P-38 World War II aircraft. They weren’t just for looks. He believed in their aerodynamic effects and fine-tuned their performance in wind tunnels at the University of Michigan.
While the design of the new 300 was striking, what really set it apart was the special 331 cubic inch Hemi engine that Chrysler dropped in them. It was hopped up with a Carter 4 Barrel carburetor, solid lifters, a special cam and a free-flow exhaust. Thanks to Exner, the 300s had some handling features too. First, they had extra firm suspensions which allowed them to corner far better than most other cars on the market. And, unlike other performance cars, it had luxury options such as high-end leather upholstery, their new PowerFlite transmission and an especially well-designed instrumentation panel. Journalists of the day considered the 300 the “ultimate gentleman’s sports sedan”.
According to Lynch Chrysler of Mukwonago, a local Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram dealer in Mukwonago, WI, the 300s were offered in only a limited number colors and trim and only in two door hardtops or convertibles. They could be ordered with standard transmission in certain years, but production was very low with that option. Still, each year since 1955 saw the engineering and performance of the famous Chrysler 300 improve and sales slowly increased.
And they were fast. Famous race car driver Tim Flock raced a 300 at Daytona in 1955, winning both on the road course and the flying mile events. In 1956 model, now designated the 300B, won both events that year too. And the Chrysler 300s dominated the NASCAR tracks in 1955 and 1956, taking the overall championship both years. The legend of the Chrysler Hemi was becoming firmly established.
The 300 with the Hemi engine was discontinued in 1959. In the 4 years of production, there were just 14,268 hardtops and 2,588 convertibles produced. The reason that the Hemi was discontinued was solely due to cost. Hemi engines had complex valve trains that were expensive to make and build. In their place Chrysler went back to an updated “wedge head” design and they used that design for several decades.
There are many, many wonderful scenic drives in this country and all you need is a car, or some other vehicle, to explore each one. We wanted to build a list of some favorites so we called our friends at Len Stoler Porsche of Ownings Mills, a local Porsche dealer in Ownings Mills, MD and they recommended quite a number. From this group, we put together a list of eight. Some are likely to be nearby you but some are “road trip” material. Here’s our list.
The Denali Highway (or Alaska Route 8) spans 135 miles through raw, undeveloped land Alaska land. Some sections have gravel surfaces and services are few but you’ll be treated to some of the most grandiose views in America. Keep your eyes open and you may see moose, elk, bears and other wildlife.
Florida Keys Highway
The highway that snakes through the Florida Keys follows a 117 mile path originally established (1912) when the Florida Coast Railroad stretched all the way from Miami to Key West. The bridges along the route are engineering marvels and stretch over the largest coral reefs in the United States. Many of the islands along the route are home to exotic animals such as the tiny Key Deer. Note: You probably don’t want to schedule a trip right away due to the devastation caused by Hurricane Irma.
Pacific Coast Highway
California’s coastal route along the pounding Pacific is one of America’s most iconic driving destinations. When it comes to stunning scenery, quirky rest stops and the serendipity of wondering what the next bend in the road will bring, few routes are quite like this one. Also known as California State Route 1, the Pacific Coast Highway was built in 1934. It runs for nearly 550 miles, stretching along most of the coastline. For the most dramatic scenery packed into less than half the total mileage, set your sights on the Central Coast and a journey of about 240 miles from Monterey south to Santa Barbara. By the way, be sure and stop at the Hearst Castle when you drive by.
The Silverado Trail
The Silverado Trail begins near the top of San Francisco Bay and travels northward through Napa Valley, the most famous winegrowing region in America. Not only is the scenery breathtaking but a major draw is that you can stop along the way and enjoy wine tastings and tours at any of the dozens of wineries along the route.
Acadia Park Loop
Acadia National Park in Maine is one of America’s most beautiful places. The 27 mile Park Loop Road swirls around Mt. Desert Island and offers breathtaking ocean views, rocky coastlines and crystal-clear lakes. You will have many opportunities to stop and go on hikes up into the hills or along the rocky Atlantic shoreline. There are several beaches on this loop and other exciting attractions on the old roads of the park. Take a trip up Cadillac Mountain in the early morning and you will see the first rays of sun that hit American soil each day.
Blue Ridge Mountains
The Blue Ridge Parkway experience is unlike any other. It is a relaxing drive revealing stunning long-range vistas and close-up views of the rugged mountains and the scenery of the Appalachian Highlands. The Parkway meanders for 469 miles, protecting a wide diversity of plants and animals, and providing plenty of recreation opportunities.
Utah’s Route 12
Utah’s Route 12 passes through Red Canyon, Bryce Canyon National Park, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument to its conclusion near the entrance to Capitol Reef National Park. For over 120 miles, you are treated to multi-colored limestone cliffs and red rock formations towering over the road. Seeing the sunset from just about anywhere on Route 12 is an unforgettable experience.
You probably know that the radiator in your car cools your car’s engine. It does this by allowing outside air to flow through the radiator core cooling the fluid circulating inside which also travels through the engine block. The problem is that vehicles aren’t always moving, so years ago engineers designed special fans to physically pull outside air through the radiator for cooling. This is an especially important process when the engine is running yet the car is standing still. Ever been stuck in a traffic jam.? You get the picture.
Starting in the early days of automobiles, the cooling fans in were driven directly by the engine. They were mounted in the front of a car’s engine and were driven off a pulley connected to the engine’s crankshaft. This configuration was simple and worked very well but technically used up a little engine power whenever the engine was running. This loss wasn’t a problem in the days of cheap fuel, however, when the government started imposing gas mileage requirements on Detroit, it became an issue. In the search for efficiency, every inefficient technology used on the engines of the day was looked at closely.
An obvious solution to the efficiency loss was to go electric. The main advantage of electric fans is that they can be designed to run at optimal speeds and only when needed. In other words, an electric fan can be shut off when the vehicle is moving. This increases efficiency and gas mileage. And, when stuck in traffic, electric fans can easily be switched back on if the coolant temperature rises too high.
Electric fan design
Electric cooling fans are typically mounted right behind the radiator. In older cars, the system consists of a DC electric motor controlled by a thermostatic on/off switch. With these simple circuits, the thermostatic switch on the radiator connects to battery power on one side, and to the fan motor on the other. When the radiator coolant heated up enough, the thermostat would close the switch and the electric fan would start rotating.
According to Len Stoler Lexus of Ownings Mills, a local Lexus dealer in Ownings Mills, MD, in the 1990s, the circuits got a little more complicated. Engineers used a dedicated module or the car’s main computer to control the fan operation. Typically, a thermostatic sensor is still used but instead of it switching heavy current, it is simply used to trigger a high-power relay. Not only does this switch the fans on when the temperature rises, it also allows fans to be switched on when AC systems are being used. This is so they can draw air across the AC condenser in addition to the radiator.
They still use engine power, though
Which brings up a point commonly misunderstood: some insist that electric fans are more efficient because they don’t “run off the engine.” This technically true, there isn’t any “fan belt” but the power does come from the engine. All the electricity in a car comes from the alternator, which is turned by the engine. Electric fans draw a lot of power and that current has to come from somewhere! And that somewhere would be the alternator. However, the system is more intelligent than the old mechanical fan and fan belt method because it can be turned on and off when operations under the hood require it to. This is the advantage of electric fans, they can be operated more efficiently than the old belt driven ones.