Thirty different auto manufacturers and technology companies are partners in a group called Car 2 Car Communication Consortium. The point is to create cars that talk to each other -- but instead of swapping secrets only with other cars of the same brand, the group wants to create vehicles that can speak to any other car, truck, or motorcycle on the road.

As one would expect, there are a number of things needed to successful implement the idea. The most important hurdle has just been cleared with the announcement that all parties have agreed on the European radio frequency that vehicles would would use to communicate. Ultimately, the consortium wants to create the ability for a Car 2 Car equipped vehicle to warn any nearby vehicle of an icy patch on the road, or for a motorcycle nearing an intersection to notify you while you're behind the wheel. Now that the consortium has a common channel to use, it only needs to decide on a common language. Esperanto, anyone? You can read the full release after the jump.

[Source: BMW]


PRESS RELEASE

INFORMATION EXCHANGE BETWEEN VEHICLES FOR MORE SAFETY IN ROAD TRAFFIC

10/24/2008: BMW Group Research and Technology shows the current development status.

Munich/Dudenhofen. Networking between vehicles from different manufacturers forms the basis for future driver assistance systems. The key focus for the BMW Group is enhancing driver sovereignty and the active safety of all road users. As part of the international forum of the CAR 2 CAR Communication Consortium, BMW Group Research and Technology demonstrates how BMW automobiles and motorcycles will be able to exchange information with vehicles from other manufacturers in the future.

Networked cars communicate with each other and with the road infrastructure using WLAN. This provides fast and early information about potential hazard situations and events in road traffic. Information exchange between cars especially at the end of tailbacks, at accidents or in icy road conditions can avoid accidents or at least reduces their consequences.

BMW Group Research and Technology has been involved in the CAR 2 CAR Communication Consortium right from the start. The consortium has grown from four partners at the start to a group of more than 30 partners. Two conditions need to be met in order to fully exploit the potential of Car-to-X communication systems with nationwide deployment: A joint technology platform needs to be agreed for defining standard interfaces and a uniform radio frequency. The recently approved 5.9 GHz frequency band for applications of Car-to-X communication represents a key milestone for standardisation in Europe - as already in USA and Japan.

The vehicle manufacturers involved with the forum use cars, trucks and motorcycles to demonstrate traffic situations when Car-to-X communication provides drivers with specific support, for example, in built-up areas where motorcycles or emergency vehicles are approaching cross-roads. Car-to-X communication is also particularly effective at roadworks or in situations where vehicles have broken down.

For more information: www.car-to-car.org