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Six hot car technology trends to watch in 2017

Are you as into watching the car technology trends as we are?  We love to watch and see the trends as they rise and see how they evolve and change the car driving experience.  It is always interesting seeing where the tech trends started and how far they have advanced since their integration into our cars.  As we were doing some reading this week we found a cool article explaining some of the up and coming tech that is being manufactured into our cars this year. And if you are currently experiencing a malfunction of some of the "old tech" in your car, contact us and we can get your car fixed and get you back on the road!

Will your next car talk to traffic lights? Are diesel engines on their last gasp? Have electric vehicles charged into the mainstream?

Those are some of the questions new technologies and vehicles may answer in 2017.

The auto industry’s present is starting to sound a lot like science fiction, thanks to technologies with names like V2X communications, smart infrastructure and e-axles.

Some of what’s on the horizon:

Cars that talk to each other

Cadillac CTS sport sedans will offer a revolutionary system in 2017 that allows them to share information about driving conditions like weather, speed, sudden braking, accidents and more. It’s the beginning of what is called vehicle-to-vehicle, or V2V, communication, a wi-fi-like technology that will eventually be standard on every new car.

“It increases drivers’ awareness of what’s beyond their line of sight,” said Sam Abuelsamid, Navigant Research senior analyst.

It’s also key to “platooning,” which will allow packs of vehicles to drive close together at high speed without slowdowns or accidents.

New life for diesel cars

Chevrolet and Mazda will test America’s appetite for diesel cars and SUVs in 2017. Diesel sales plummeted when the technology’s prime purveyor, Volkswagen, got caught up in an emissions-cheating scandal.

“We don’t know what consumer demand for diesels (is), because the largest traditional provider can’t sell them,” IHS Automotive senior analyst Stephanie Brinley said.

Diesel powered versions of the popular Chevrolet Cruze compact sedan and Mazda CX-5 family crossover SUV could show whether the technology — which delivers high fuel economy and excellent performance — has a future in the U.S.

Autonomous vehicles in the real world

Fiat Chrysler is building an intriguing part of the future in its Windsor, Canada, assembly plant, which will produce about 100 autonomous Chrysler Pacifica plug-in hybrid minivans as part of Google’s vehicle development project.

Google won’t sell any of the self-driving minivans to the public, but they will rack up countless miles testing the technology’s readiness and safety in the ultimate family vehicle.

Google chose the Pacifica as its production-vehicle test bed in part because the minivan’s size makes it ideal to carry the myriad sensors autonomous driving requires. The Pacifica’s height also makes it a tall platform to give sensors the best possible view of the van’s surroundings.

Tesla gets some big competition on electric cars

Demand for electric cars will face a crucial test this year, as the Chevrolet Bolt brings a new level of affordability and practicality to the technology.

The Bolt’s EPA-rated range of 238 miles on a single charge and base price just under $30,000 after tax incentives should put the roomy, zero-emission hatchback in competition not just with other environmental heroes, but family vehicles like the Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonata and Ford Escape.

Other electric cars, including the Kia Soul and Volkswagen e-Golf, are increasing their ranges dramatically, though not nearly to the Bolt’s level. And don’t forget Tesla’s eagerly awaited Model 3, its first mid-priced model, which aims to challenge the Bolt for the longest range at the best price.

“Electric cars are getting better thanks to more energy-dense batteries,” said Bill Visnic, Society of Automotive Engineers editorial director.

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