We live in an era full of innovative technologies that change life for the better. In comparison to some of these clever and valuable unveilings, the progression of the first automobile to our present-day vehicles may not be as sizzling to consider. Regardless of the similarity of the 21st-century car to that of the 20th century—both containing a combustion engine, gearbox, and set of wheels—the automotive industry has undoubtedly undergone transformations through advancing technology.
The car industry has reinvented itself time and time again within the past couple of decades. Many of the most important and revolutionizing auto advancements and milestones have occurred during these increasingly tech-savvy years to affect the vehicles we drive today. Curious as to what these enhancements are? Let’s examine more closely the greatest breakthroughs in the automotive industry.
Automotive Navigation Systems
Ah, the good old GPS. The U.S military first introduced the Global Positioning System—a satellite-based radio navigation system—in the late 1970s. However, it wasn’t until 1990 that Mazda implemented the first-ever GPS device for automotive navigational use. Offered limitedly in the top-of-the-line Eunos Cosmos model, the first commercial GPS wouldn’t fully arrive in America for another decade.
Many contemporary car-owners are used to this handy feature in their vehicles. Even if your car doesn’t have a built-in system, your smartphone does—it can connect to the car’s Bluetooth system and tell you where to turn and how to avoid traffic. Isn’t technology great? Some of the younger generations haven’t had to experience asking for directions or using paper maps. These days, getting lost seems to be an adventure only a few people ever discover.
Turbocharged Engines and Components
In the context of engineering, nothing beats a turbocharger as one of the greatest breakthroughs in the automotive industry. Numerous car-owners choose to make various luxury modification upgrades for a smoother ride. Yet turbochargers are essential parts for the ultimate performance. General Motors and Ford were the first leading manufacturers to incorporate these components in the American industry in affordable vehicles. Smaller cars have been able to achieve just as much power as larger vehicles or expensive sports cars since the late 2000s.
“Turbocharged” remains a hot buzzword today for reducing emissions and increasing drivability. Drivers can’t go wrong with turbocharged vehicles to ramp up power and boost fuel efficiency beyond a performance perspective.
Smart Key Fobs
Key fobs are incredibly genius but strange solutions to past pitfalls and inconveniences. Higher-end producers introduced these smart sensations as pure novelty items in the mid-1990s. Now, key fobs are practically ubiquitous, as the majority of present-day automobiles utilize these tiny devices. The effortless opening and starting of vehicles come at the click of a button. Drivers can use fobs to automatically lock and unlock doors, set off lights and alarms as safety tools, and conveniently start their cars from a distance. These comfort, ease, and personalization standards showcase how technology is continually making strides to make cars faster, safer, and more enjoyable to drive.