BMW has announced a new feature that can enable a car to park itself and return to you at the touch of a button.
A voice command is spoken into a smart-watch and immediately, the car leaves its space and drives to the exit, calculating the time it will take so that it arrives just as you get there.
Known as the Remote Valet Parking Assistant, the new technology is being tested on Munich-based BMW’s i3 vehicle.
Instead of GPS, the technology uses four laser scanners on the car, which create a virtual map of the building, to navigate.
When arriving at the car park, the driver need only get out of the vehicle and activate the feature. The car will then recognise the structural features of the car park, and ‘equally reliably steers round any obstacles that appear unexpectedly – such as incorrectly parked vehicles,’ according to BMW.
Its makers say it can even look for a parking spot and recognize which ones are empty. The company hasn’t said what would happen if it doesn’t manage to find one, though, such in a busy car park in London or New York.
The technology is being developed alongside other new features such as 360-degree collision avoidance. This uses the laser scanners to record the environment and identify obstacles such as columns or walls.
If the system detects a collision is imminent, it brakes automatically.
Credit: Daily Mail