Future Cars

The way your car drives is changing - futuristic features are heading towards a time when you can sit back and let the computer do the driving. Alex Forrest from the RAC says that's a way off yet but some interesting advances are promising. The RAC has just released a new device called RAC Go - it's a box that plugs into your car's diagnostic system to tell you everything from your engines health to your driving performance. "It can provide you with information that usually only mechanics can see when they plug your car in when it's getting serviced at the dealership or independent repairer." The device connects via Bluetooth to a smart phone app - giving you data about the car's performance as well as information on things like where the cheapest fuel is near you. "The other functions of this app also include a parking capability as well so it can remind you when you're away from your car when your parking ticket is about to run out and for those people who trouble finding their way back to their car you can also utilise the GPS in your phone to guide you back to where your car's parked."

Property manager Bree was one of the first drivers to trial the app. she says it's been useful for keeping an electronic log for tax and work - it's also shown her how she performs as a driver.

New model cars are packed with features designed to make driving safer and easier. This Volvo is just one which demonstrates semi-autonomous driving it has lane detection which subtly corrects your steering if you start to veer.

The car is also fitted with forward facing cameras that detect and read speed signs on the road and displays them on the dash. Unlike GPS style speed indicators it can see temporary changes to speed signs and that could save you a ticket because your car will spot a change of speed zones even if you don't. Some drivers will be familiar with parking assist - it takes over the steering to get you into a car parking bay, it's a strange sensation - and a window into our driving future.

Details about the RAC GO app

www.rac.com.au/racgo