The Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas is all about technology. More and more, technology is being embraced and embedded into almost every new vehicle. Consequently, the CES featured a lot of cars, trucks, and press conferences by automotive manufacturers. Volkswagen was one of these that took advantage of having a large display at the Las Vegas Convention Center. VW also held a media press conference on the first media day at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center.
VW demonstrated an entire fleet of vehicles just so they could show off the interaction of car and computer in their cars and how that interaction will continue into the future. The primary focus of VW at the 2015 CES show was about four areas. These were the integration of smartphones and vehicle apps, operation of vehicles intuitively, computer-controlled drive systems, and autonomous (and semi-autonomous) driving. Almost all car manufacturers are pushing ahead for self-driving cars and VW is no exception.
Dr. Martin Winterkorn is the CEO of Volkswagen AG and he commented, “The two inventions of the century, the car and the computer, are gradually coming closer together. We need to design future mobility to be even more intelligent and even more networked.”
GOLF R TOUCH – The Golf R Touch is a concept vehicle. In the past concept vehicles were introduced at the major car shows, but with the interaction in today’s world, VW unveiled the Golf R Touch and displayed for the first time at the 2015 CES. It features an infotainment system that uses hand gestures to control. A simple hand movement in front of the display allows the touchscreen to be operated without actually touching it.
CONNECTED GOLF – Volkswagen is showing off the networking potential of the car in the display called a Connected Golf. It is an e-Golf that is equipped to interact with a variety of apps, smartphones, and tablets. One such example shown off was the Parking Guide that is part of the navigation system. It uses technology that locates parking sites nearby that have a high probability of having available parking spaces.
E-GOLF INTELLIGENT CHARGE – VW used an e-Golf to illustrate how electric cars can be utilized more conveniently in the future. This proposal shows how a small electric car can be parked on a large ‘charging’ mat instead of hooked up with a cable-based charging system. It works much like laying a smartphone or tablet on a small mat at a counter or desk for charging rather than hooking up a cord of some type. Combined with this could be the ability to use the navigation system to locate convenient charging spots.
E-GOLF PERFECT PARKING – VW showed off their Park Assist which helps guide the car into perpendicular or parallel parking spaces. Whether the car is exiting a space or parking, the system assists the driver by making optimal movements of the steering wheel. At the 2015 CES, the more advanced stage of Park Assist was introduced and is being called Trained Parking. A camera mounted in the base of the rear-view mirror scans a frequently used path into a parking space, then the computer takes over and semi-automatically parks the car. The driver does not even have to stay in the car, but can control the parking operation using his/her smartphone, much like a remote control.
There is much more technology being used by Volkswagen and there was much on display at the VW exhibit at CES. These are the major highlights, but it gives a clue as to what is coming in the future and VW is keeping their customers and vehicles up-to-date and connected.