FRONT RUNNERS IN CAR NEWS THIS PAST WEEK
Does Your Car Heart Beat Like a Love Song, Baby?
Yes, you read that right. There’s a new concept vehicle being developed by Lexus that will display the driver’s heartbeat on the outside of the Lexus RC F coupe by “using electro-luminescent paint” reports Ariel Bogle, writer for Mashable.
This is a six-month joint venture with Lexus, M&C Saatchi Australia, and Tricky Jigsaw.
Bogle gives Mashable readers the inside scoop in her exclusive article posted July 21. She elaborates on the technology behind the concept car, explaining the vehicle contains a standard heartbeat monitor that will read the driver’s heartbeat and wirelessly sends electro-signals to a control panel in the back of the car. From there the control panel will turn the electro signals into electro-luminescent paint and displays the heartbeat on the body of the car (much like LED technology).
The concept car will accurately display your heart rate, even when your heart rate spikes when someone cuts you off. And of course when it is similar to a very popular, catchy pop song.
Tesla and Cheap? Two Words You Never Thought Would Go Together
With new competitors like Faraday Future stepping into the ring of manufacturing Electric Vehicles (EV), Tesla Motors is rising to the challenge; seeking to make their EVs more affordable for Americans.
An article published July 22 by Kirsten Korosec of Fortune, reveals that Tesla has purchased a $5 billion “gigafactory” that will be specifically designed to increase Tesla’s manufacturing capacity in hopes of reducing the current per-kilowatt-hour cost by 30% by the end of 2017. Meaning that by 2017, the idea of a cheap Tesla may not be as far-fetched.
GHA: Grand Hack Auto
Another article published on July 21 by Joseph Menn, (writer for Reuter.com) sheds light on a different technology advancement within the automotive industry. However, this technology might make your heart skip a beat – and not in a good way.
Car hacking has been a long standing debate since the push to connect vehicles to each other . Up until now, there had only really been talk of car hacking being a possibility. But the potential threat has become a reality and car hackers will be powerful enough to seize control of a moving car. Now that’s a scary thought.
According to Menn, two veteran security researchers, Charles Miller and Chris Valasek were able to use the Internet to hack into a Jeep Cherokee, turn its radio on and play around with other car functions. They then proceeded to hack the code within the entertainment system allowing them “to issue commands through the internal network to steering, brakes and the engine”.
Needless to say, these two researchers have shown that car hacking is more than just talk, but real, and preventative measures need to be taken to stop car hackers.
Ford Smart Move in Fuel Economy
On July 23, Chris Bruce, associate editor of AutoBlog, posted an article revealing that Ford is developing a new Smart Cruise feature for their vehicles. This patented cruise system is said to be smarter, more adaptive and economical for Ford drivers.
Bruce explains how the new system will gather data on the grade of the road, volume of traffic and its drivers’ driving preferences in order to adapt more efficiently to reduce fuel usage. This will be particularly useful when driving up and down hills. Good news for Ford drivers in San Francisco!
Roger Penske: One in a Billion
Roger Penske, #1415 on Forbes list of The World’s Billionaires, will join the likes of Ferrari Enzo and Henry Ford in the Automotive Hall of Fame. Announced on July 23, Penske is one of four automotive leaders that have been inducted for the 2015 Automotive Hall of Fame. Autoweek is saying that “this is a terrific hall of fame class”.
Penske is not only the founder of Penske Corp, the owner of racing Team Penske, on the corporate board of directors for General Electric, but is also a chairman for Super Bowl XL. At 76, Penske has a net worth of $1.32 billion.
He is now a part of a tradition that has been around since 1939, acknowledging the accomplishments of automotive industry leaders.
Check back next week for another round of our Car News Catch-Up.
Thanks for reading everyone!