Can’t find a spot? Let the car do it. BMW turns an i3 into a valet for CES 2015

At last year’s Consumer Electronics Show, BMW unveiled tech that turns a car into a driving coach. This year, it’s focusing on something a little more practical.

For CES 2015, BMW will unveil its Remote Valet Parking Assistant, a new autonomous system that does exactly what its name says.

Installed in a converted i3 electric car, BMW says the system will allow a car to drive itself into a multi-story garage and park itself without any human intervention.

The driver can dispatch the car with commands from a smartwatch. The car then uses onboard sensors and stored plans for the building to navigate itself to a space while its owner goes on his or her way.

Once parked, the car automatically locks itself and waits for a scheduled pick up time or voice command. The car then estimates how long it will take to reach the meeting point in order to arrive on time.

BMW Remote Valet Parking Assistant

The i3 test car uses four laser scanners to orient itself and detect obstacles. They can also be used at a lower level of automation to automatically brake the i3 with the system feels the human driver is about to hit something. Steering away from an obstacle or changing direction releases the brakes.

BMW notes that this system doesn’t rely on GPS signals, which can get cut off in bunker-like parking garages. So far though, it’s not saying how production cars could be quickly provided with the floor plan for any garage a driver might want to use.

The Remote Valet Parking Assistant is one of numerous robotic systems proposed by carmakers that are expected to pave the way for fully-autonomous cars.

Volvo unveiled a similar system last year, and Elon Musk claims the upgraded suite of sensors in the revamped Tesla Model S allows for auto parking in the future.

Given that parking-assist systems are already commonplace on production cars, parking could be one of the first realms where the machines secure a beachhead.

Cars

Walmart wants to save billions while integrating autonomy into its supply chain

Walmart teamed up with California-based Gatik to integrate self-driving technology into its supply chain. The retailer wants autonomous trucks and vans to transport goods to and from warehouses across the nation.
Home Theater

These TVs might cost less than $1,000, but they certainly don’t perform like it

Check out our picks for the best TVs under $1,000 to enjoy top-shelf features like 4K Ultra HD, High Dynamic Range, and gorgeous image processing. Park yourself here to find the absolute best values in TV land.
Cars

New Toyota tech will automatically shut off engines, apply parking brakes

Toyota is launching two new safety features for the 2020 model year. One will automatically shut off a car's engine when stationary, and the other will automatically shift into park and apply the parking brake to prevent rollaways.
Cars

Florida allows autonomous cars to drive on its roads without human supervision

Florida governor Ron DeSantis passed a law that establishes a legal framework for self-driving cars to operate within the state. It allows car and tech companies to test self-driving cars without a human operator behind the wheel.
Cars

Dainese Smart Jacket vest airbag breaks new ground so you won’t get broken

Regardless of the type of motorcycle you ride, your body is in jeopardy when you travel. When you share the road with cars and trucks, personal protection is a concern, and Dainese just launched the Smart Jacket, a new airbag vest, to help.
News

Tesla hasn’t made a pickup, so YouTuber Simone Giertz made one out of a Model 3

There’s a new Tesla model in town (sort of). Sick of waiting for Tesla to release an electric pickup truck, YouTuber Simone Giertz decided to make her own — post a fake commercial for it on YouTube.
Product Review

With more power and more tech, the 2019 GTI is still the VW you should buy

Year in and year out, the Volkswagen Golf GTI sits atop the list of the best cars you can buy. The 2019 GTI is no different, and like its predecessors is a blast to drive. An additional 8 hp and new tech even in the base S model makes it a…
Cars

Horsepower, tech, or cubic feet? Have all three in the BMW 8 Series Gran Coupe

BMW expanded the second-generation 8 Series lineup with a four-door model named Gran Coupe. Developed to replace the 6 Series Gran Coupe, the 8 Series offers the same six- and eight-cylinder engines in a more spacious package.
Cars

The 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 thunders into the muscle car ring with 760 hp

The 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 revives one of the greatest names in American muscle cars, and gives Ford some ammunition in the horsepower war with Chevy and Dodge. Debuting at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show, the GT500 boasts over 700 hp.
Cars

Volkswagen says no thanks to outsiders as it develops its own operating system

Volkswagen is taking software development into its own hands instead of joining forces with tech companies. It's assembling a team of more than 5,000 engineers to design an operating system that will equip in all of its cars by 2025.
Cars

The GX gets smarter as it ages; it’s even teaching tricks to other Lexus models

Lexus gave the GX 460 tech and visual updates for the 2020 model year. The GX now comes standard with a full suite of electronic driving aids, including automatic braking with pedestrian detection and adaptive cruise control.
Cars

Here’s what’s happening if you see someone steering a Tesla while it’s in park

The just-launched Tesla Arcade brings all of its games into a single hub, and includes a new kart racer — Beach Buggy Racing 2 — that lets you play using the vehicle’s steering wheel.
Cars

Kia’s 2020 Seltos has a nightclub mode that turns your commute into a party

Kia expanded its portfolio of crossovers and SUVs with the Seltos, a soft-roader developed with Millennials in mind. It's small, but it's not basic; it's available with a long list of tech features.
Cars

Uber vs. Lyft: Which ridesharing app goes the distance?

Uber and Lyft have changed the way people get from A to B, and while these ridesharing companies provide the same service on paper, they operate in different ways. Here, we break down the major differences between the two.