In a preview of its offerings at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show, Delphi Automotive will deploy just such a concept. Engineers have designed a system that communicates with traffic signals, street signs, pedestrians, cyclists, even to fry pits and parking garages along a driver's route.
To date, engineers and researchers across the auto industry have focused on the technical and safety-oriented foundation of future vehicle-to-vehicle communications, which could help cars share information about everything from traffic tie-ups to upcoming road hazards. Beyond those building blocks, many have projected that V2V could also include more consumer-focused features. Delphi's system, dubbed V2Everything, might be the first that combines those sorts of features in a tangible package.
At CES in Las Vegas, scheduled to begin the first week of January, company officials say they'll demonstrate in real-world conditions how V2V technology can be used in an autonomous vehicle to provide a range of critical safety information and leisure and convenience options for riders.
"We imagine a world with zero traffic accidents," said Jeff Owens, Delphi's chief technology officer. "To get there, we will need a convergence of active safety, sensor fusion, connectivity platforms and advanced software."
The first V2V technology installed on a production car is slated to appear on the 2017 Cadillac CTS.
Such software might allow a vehicle to start searching for and reserving parking spots at a programmed destination long before arriving. It could allow riders to place their McDonald's drive-through order from the road and have the food ready for pickup along the route. For the drive itself, the Delphi-equipped car can stay updated on the status of traffic lights around Las Vegas, and can anticipate yellow and red lights. Using smart-phone technology, the car can detect pedestrians and cyclists that may otherwise be hard to see. It can send messages to friends or family to notify them of a driver's location.
Some of those features have been available on third-party apps or individually developed by automakers. But this system marries them together in a single system that is tailored for use in self-driving cars.
Delphi already has a leg up in the V2V traffic environment. The first V2V technology installed on a production car is slated to appear on the 2017 Cadillac CTS as part of the car's Super Cruise system. The V2Everything system is further away from production models, but the preview is only a few weeks away.