The automotive industry is evolving all the time, and advancements in recent years especially are signifying some major changes for humanity’s most widespread form of personal transport. Of course, all technological advances that affect the mainstream car industry ultimately trickle down to the used car market, which in turn means we’re likely to see some pretty interesting devices come to salvage cars over the coming years, including the ones we stock right here in our own online vehicle auctions. Here are some of the most influential automotive advancements of recent years!
In-built speed limiters
This is probably the first thing that leaps to mind for a lot of drivers, given how recently it was announced. Only a few months ago, in March, the EU announced that this technology would be compulsory for all car manufacturers to fit in their vehicles, as of 2022. And even though we’re exiting the European Union, the British government has said that we’ll be adopting it too.
So how will it work? Well, the new system will use a combination of satellite positioning technology and in-car cameras to triangulate itself, and use the dashboard to display the driver any information about the local speed. Meanwhile, the system will also resist (but not entirely prevent) the driver attempting to gradually ramp the car up over that speed. The driver can momentarily override the system by pushing their foot all the way down, mainly to complete a manoeuvre such as an overtake, or get themselves out of a dangerous situation. However, it’s not something you want to be caught doing! The technology is already proving controversial, with Big Brother comparisons abound, but like it or not, it’s probably here to stay.
Another technology designed to regulate the worst driving behaviour, in-built breathalysers are actually already in operation in various countries. It’s referred to as an alcohol interlock; a breathalyser which also acts as an immobiliser. Right now, they’re not being marketed at the general public, but instead being mandatory measures for convicted offenders or those who struggle with addiction to alcohol. They’re already compulsory for high level offenders in Belgium as of July 2018.
There’s no telling when (or even if) these devices will be rolled out publicly in the UK. Like the speed limiters, there’s likely to be significant pushback, and there are some anecdotal reports of devices activating even when drivers are sober, leaving them stranded and very unhappy. But companies like SEAT have already demonstrated some consumer models, so they may well be here sooner than many people think.
Once viewed as a novelty or fad by many drivers, electric cars have been here since the early 2000s, but sales in recent years have begun rocketing amongst the general public, partially due to rising environmental concerns across the globe. While electric cars are far from the magic solution (the cost of manufacturing lithium batteries takes a heavy environmental toll), the technology is gradually being seen as more viable. There are the clean air concerns with diesel cars, and in fact both diesel and petrol are expected to be phased out within a matter of decades. Eventually, almost all used cars could end up being electric ones!
Perhaps the technology that gets the most amount of press attention, so you’ve almost certainly heard about this before. While two of the above measures aim to influence how drivers control their cars, this one aims to remove humans from the equation completely! However, like electric cars, the technology is far from perfect just yet. There are still lots of problems surrounding self driving cars, not least of which is the legal quandaries they pose. (If a self-driving car hits a pedestrian, who’s responsible? The car’s manufacturer? The IT specialist who programmed it? The passenger in the car?)
On the other hand though - again, just like electric cars - the progress on self driving technology is coming along in leaps and bounds, especially with massive international companies such as Uber and Google racing each other to see who can perfect the invention first. With so much commercial interest vested in the launch of self driving technology, it’s nigh-on certain that it’ll make up a sizeable proportion of used cars eventually!
Of course, you won’t find any examples of this technology in our online car auctions just yet here at RAW2K. However, that doesn’t mean you won’t find great bargains on models from global manufacturers like Volkswagen, Mercedes and BMW. Our salvage car auctions are refreshed on a daily and weekly basis, so don’t forget to check back often!