Nobull director Steve Carman chooses his favourite automotive technology from this year’s CES show

Nobull director Steve Carman chooses his favourite automotive technology from this year’s CES show

This year’s CES Show in Las Vegas saw more car makers than ever attend to show off their wares and announce new technology ventures that would further transform their cars into portable computers and data collection devices.

10 years ago, you would have struggled to find a car maker at the show, but each year since has seen more companies get involved in what is now the global launch platform for technology companies and their innovative new technologies.

Check out this link to a 50-year timeline of technology milestones CES has witnessed since 1967. The timeline however has missed the electric Ford Focus from 2011 and driverless car technology which was launched at CES in 2013.

With my current car up for replacement in 2022 it was good to see Fisker promising to launch its striking Ocean all-electric SUV in the same year. Costing just $38,000 I’m not sure whether right hand drive is planned, but I love the lightweight solar panels on the roof, its cool, chunky styling and 300 miles per charge which would suit my motoring needs.

Having finally invested in a digital TV (a Sony 59” OLED Bravia), I was pleased to see the brand take CES by storm by launching its Vision S electric executive saloon. Boasting Tesla-esque styling, it was all about Sony using it to showcase its in-car entertainment features and sensors rather than as a serious assault on car production.

Powerful image sensors that record what is happening around the car will be vital in future autonomous car development, as will be a quality in-car entertainment system to entertain the driver when they are running their car on full autonomous mode.

Lamborghini is one of the first car makers to enable Alexa to control practically all driver functions on its new Huracan Evo. With 640bhp and 0-60 acceleration of 2.9 seconds it’s probably wise for the driver to never take their eyes of the road. Everything from heating to lights is Alexa voice-controlled.

Chinese brand Byton’s 48-inch display won the competition for the largest screen ever seen in a car, while Uber’s obsession with flying taxis continues with a partnership with Hyundai. Resembling a large drone, the SA-1 has a 60-mile range and can travel at 180mph, although an actual launch date looks several years away.

The environment friendly award went to Mercedes-Benz with its all-electric Vision Avtr where its battery cells are free of rare-Earth elements and compostable. A rattan wood floor and vegan leather seats complete its environmental line up. Perhaps the car will feature in the Avatar sequel which is due out in 2021.

While I have picked my top cars at CES based on style and features alone, Reuters has also published an excellent article about how big technology companies are looking to turn cars into smartphones.