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Hyundai has a patent for a way to disable smartphone features, like calls and texting, by using specific software and antennas inside the vehicle. It can even limit these restrictions simple to the area around the driver's seat.

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Ford has filed a patent for an 11-speed automatic transmission and has outlined three ways of making it work.

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The DeltaWing might make the transition from the racetrack to the street. Two recent patents show possible designs for a future road car.

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Toyota has patented an improved eye-tracking technology that attempts to eliminate false-positive results caused by redeye. The system also monitors a driver's upper and lower eyelids to calculate how open the is.

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BMW has patents on two, bizarre three-cylinder engine designs meant to improve on the classic V-twin. One splays out the pistons in a fan shape, adds a cylinder to the traditional design.

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A study by Thomson Reuters looks at the past 24 years of auto patents to examine Apple's current place in the industry. Samsung might be a big competitor, but an Apple merger with Tesla could be a real boon for both businesses.

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After over a dozen lawsuits in just two years, Ford is taking action to combat so-called patent trolls, companies that purchase patents just to file lawsuits.

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Apple has filed for a patent to let your smartphone also act as a car key. While some automakers have apps that already do that, this solution lets users selectively share the functionality with other devices.

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Part Of New Eco-Tech Center In Gwangju

Hyundai will open up some its green car patents in order to make it easier for small Korean companies to promote hydrogen fuel cell cars.

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A trademark application filed by General Motors for the name Z71 Trail Boss suggests a more hardcore off-roader could be in store for Chevy or GMC in the near future.

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Mini impressed us all when it revealed the Superleggera Vision concept at the Paris Motor Show a couple of months ago. But even before the little roadster concept debuted, there were already rumors of its production potential. And those rumors are only being further entrenched by the emergence of a series of patent renderings.

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Ever since Opel brought out the Cascada convertible last year, rumors have been flying that Buick would offer it Stateside – much like it does with the Insignia-based Regal and the Astra-based Verano. And now we might have our best clue yet as to what Buick might call it.

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Development of Bentley's forthcoming utility vehicle is almost complete, and the British automaker has painted a vivid picture of what to expect: otherworldly luxurious, a range of powertrains including a twelve-pot and a hybrid, and a price tag that is sure to eclipse any other SUV or crossover on the market. One of the biggest questions still remaining, however, is what Bentley will call the thing, but we might have our answer right here.

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If you've ever wanted a powerplant that looks more like a greeble from a Star Wars spaceship than a block engine, Eco-Motive has your answer. The just-announced dual-fuel "H" engine can burn gasoline or compressed natural gas (CNG).

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Green may have been a popular color choice for the classic Jaguar E-Type, but even in Lightweight form (pictured above), it was hardly what you'd call environmentally friendly. Not by today's standards, anyway, with six-, eight- and twelve-cylinder engines displacing between 3.8 and 5.3 liters. But Jaguar looks to be preparing to revive the nameplate – or at least one similar – with a new electric vehicle in the works.

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When we read reports that Ferrari had applied for a patent on a V-twin engine design, our first thought was to check the date: this says the first of October, right... not April? And so here we are, entertaining the notion that Ferrari could be developing a motorcycle engine.

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There may not be many ways to forecast what an automaker is planning for the future, but there are some. Trademark applications are one of them, and Chrysler has just applied with the US Patent and Trademark Office to protect the name "Trackhawk." The question is, what's it planning on using it for? We don't know for sure, but we can put together an educated guess or two. And one guess is that Jeep will use the name to replace the letters SRT on the performance version of the Grand Cherokee.

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Students at China's Chang'an University have applied for a patent on the bizarre creation seen above, according to Visor Down. It's clearly based on a motorcycle, and this oddity appears to be an attempt at a conversion to remove the wheels and replace them with a single, continuous track. The modifications would seemingly maintain the suspension of a normal cycle, including a telescoping front fork and rear swing arm, while completely ditching the wheels.

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Recent patent filings appear to indicate that Yamaha might be thinking about bringing a leaning, three-wheeled electric scooter to the US. While the idea of a trike cycle is hardly new – after all Yamaha already has its own Tricity – this one would have its dual wheels in the back with each one powered by its own electric motor. According to Visor Down, the Japanese company submitted for an application on the same vehicle in Europe, as well.

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By now, it's clear that the Chinese auto industry has shown us a demonstrated will (if not necessarily the complete ability) to copy something that another automaker has made. In this case, the subject appears to be the Local Motors Rally Fighter.

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Automobiles keep getting more and more advanced, with computers playing an ever-increasingly vital role in their operation. But some things remain the same. Despite more advanced (if not necessarily better) technologies available, we still burn fossils to fuel our engines, we still check what's behind us in actual mirrors and (with few exceptions) we still turn a steering wheel mechanically connected to the front wheels to change directions. But that doesn't mean automakers aren't working at new

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