NHTSA: Autonomous car technology could eliminate up to 80 percent of crashes

NHTSA working with auto industry to accelerate vehicle to vehicle communication, autonomous driving

Self-driving cars aren’t just for future robots and lazy, super-rich humans; they could also prove to be a much safer way to travel for everybody. At least that’s what the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration man-in-charge David Strickland said today at the Society of Automotive Engineers World Congress in Detroit. While delivering his keynote speech, Strickland heralded technology such as autonomous driving and vehicles that are able to communicate with one another, going on to say they could eliminate up to 80 percent of road accidents.

To be fair, autonomous driving technology and inter-vehicle communication isn’t all that new. Google has been dabbling with it for some time now, and announced it was shopping around for interested automotive partners. Luxury German automaker BMW has its ConnectedDrive (see how the words are cleverly connected?), while  General Motors has been tinkering around with its EN-V concept for a while now, and just this week unveiled the next generation of its Chevy-branded, self-driving pod car in Beijing.

Of course the applications for cars that can “speak” with one another and even operate without the need for a driver’s input rests far beyond mere superficially: like texting, playing games, or shaving/doing your makeup while on your way to work – although you could very well do all those things in the not-too-distant future. Instead, what automakers are keen to explore are the inherent safety benefits a machine may provide over man. In fact, this was one of the driving factors for GM when we interviewed director of GM’s Electrical and Control Integration Lab, Nady Boules, and the director of GM Advanced Vehicle Concepts, Chris Borroni-Bird last year.

For now, the Detroit Free Press reports that Strickland and the NHTSA are currently working with the auto industry — in addition to other government agencies — to help accelerate the introduction of advanced vehicle-to-vehicle connectivity such as crash warning systems and lane departure alerts with hopes of making our future commutes a lot safer, and maybe even a little more fun.

What do you think? Are your ready to hand your keys over to a machine?

Cars

Subaru appoints new president, plans new hybrid, SUV, and autonomous tech

Subaru has appointed a new president Tomomi Nakamura, who announced an ambitious plan to introduce a new hybrid model, a new "global SUV," a new design language, and a push toward more electrification and autonomous driving tech.
Cars

Shift it yourself: How to drive stick in a manual transmission car

It might seem intimidating, but anyone can drive a manual transmission car. Knowing how to operate this type of gearbox will serve you well. Here's everything you need to know to learn how to drive stick.
Cars

First self-driving shuttle coasts into New York’s Times Square

On July 17, Coast Autonomous, a new entry in the self-driving vehicle market, kicked off a day of demonstrations of its autonomous P-1 Shuttle on Broadway in New York’s crowded Times Square.
Cars

The BlackFly by Opener is a flying car that could turn us all into pilots

Forget self-driving cars. The race to build the first flying car is now very much on. This week, California-based startup Opener officially threw its hat in the flying car ring with the debut of BlackFly.
Cars

Siemens' autonomous 1965 Ford Mustang finds trouble on hill at Goodwood fest

Siemens has turned a 1965 Ford Mustang into a self-driving race car. It keeps the carbureted, 4.7-liter V8 engine but it gains sensors and powerful onboard computers that will help it race up the Hillclimb at the annual Goodwood Festival of…
Movies & TV

Best new shows and movies to stream: ‘Gone Baby Gone,’ ‘Harlots,’ and more

Need something to watch this weekend? Check out our list of the best new shows and movies to stream right now. On the list this week: Gone Baby Gone, We Own the Night, Mulholland Drive, and more.
Cars

From a bad battery to a crash, Virginia Tech’s automated car beat all challenges

Eight colleges across America were chosen to compete in a three-year challenge to build an autonomous car. Sponsored by General Motors and SAE, the AutoDrive Challenge offers college students the chance to create a Level 4 autonomous…
Home Theater

Need more contrast in your life? Here’s what you need to know about HDR TVs

So what is HDR TV? In a nutshell, it’s the best thing to happen to TV since the arrival of 4K. Here's everything you need to know about the technology, what it can do, and why it’s a must-have.
Cars

Keep your driving record squeaky clean with these top-flight radar detectors

Nobody likes getting a speeding ticket, but these gadgets can help. Check out our picks for the best radar detectors on the market, from the likes of Valentine One, Escort, and Whistler.
Movies & TV

15 epic sci-fi novels you should read before they become blockbuster films

You can get ahead of the next crop of science-fiction movies coming out of Hollywood by picking up the books that inspired them. We compiled a list of books you can add to your reading list now to get a glimpse of the future.
Mobile

These are the best video chat apps to help you stay in touch

Though still relatively new, video chat apps can help you connect with people from around the world. Here are our personal favorites to help you keep in touch regardless of smartphone OS.
Emerging Tech

Don’t print with crappy plastic. Here’s the best 3D-printing filament you can buy

Choosing the right filament for your 3D printer can be a bit overwhelming, so to save you from the hassle of digging through a zillion forums for good advice, we put together this guide to the best 3D printing filament.
Product Review

How basic is too basic? Toyota tests the limits with its C-HR

We bond with Toyota’s C-HR subcompact crossover trekking across central Florida. It arrives as an entry-level model to battle the Honda HR-V, Mazda CX-3, Kia Niro, Chevrolet Trax, Hyundai Kona, Nissan Kicks, Jeep Renegade, and the Ford…
Mobile

If you're looking for a good laugh, here are more than 60 questions to ask Siri

Siri has come a long way since her first appearance on the iPhone 4S in 2011. We know she can make appointments and give directions, did you know she can make you laugh too? If you want proof, here are lots of funny questions to ask Siri.
Smart Home

The best washing machines make laundry day a little less of a chore

It takes a special kind of person to love doing laundry, but the right machine can help make this chore a little easier. Check out our picks for the best washing machines on the market right now.
Photography

Brother’s new INKvestment Tank printer is made for people who hate buying ink cartridges

With a new ink cartridge design, Brother's new INKvestment Tank printer can run for up to a year before the cartridges need replacing -- ideal for users who want convenience and cost-savings.
Cars

Terrafugia Transition flying car will finally go on sale in 2019

The Terrafugia Transition flying car will go on sale next year, roughly a decade after the first prototype rolled out of its hangar. Terrafugia promises improvements, including a hybrid powertrain, to make up for the long wait.
Cars

First McLaren Senna to arrive in North America shines like an emerald

The first McLaren Senna to cross the pond was delivered to a customer in New York City. The buyer has a penchant for custom colors -- he chose a special green hue for this 211-mph supercar.
Cars

Audi kicks off the TT’s 20th birthday bash with more performance and tech

The Audi TT gains updates inside, outside, and under the hood for its 20th anniversary. Stylists chose not to make significant changes to the design but the 2019 TT gains luxury and technology features, plus an important upgrade.
Cars

Tesla Model S logs over 400,000 miles in three years, still going strong

A Tesla Model S operated by California-based shuttle service Tesloop has covered over 400,000 miles in just three years. Tesloop said the electric car has been much cheaper to maintain than comparable internal-combustion models.
Cars

James Bond’s Aston Martin DB5 from ‘Goldfinger’ may have been found

There's some breaking news in the collector car world, as Auto Classics reports that James Bond’s Aston Martin DB5, commissioned for use in the film 'Goldfinger,' might be on the path to recovery after being stolen back in 1997.
Cars

Lyft wants to partner with cities to add bike and scooter sharing

Lyft announced a multi-mode transportation plan to bring bike and scooter sharing to cities. To kick off the new initiative Lyft will invest $1 million to help nonprofits establish income eligible transportation programs.