Cars talking to each other? Believe it

First on CNBC: Cars talking to each other

As we pulled out into traffic on Paradise Boulevard in Las Vegas, the modified Audi immediately let me know this would be a far different ride than I've experienced my entire life.

The Audi SUV, modified with the latest technology from auto supplier Delphi, communicated with other cars, traffic lights and even alerted us when a pedestrian was near the street so we could avoid an accident.

Delphi calls it Vehicle to Everything technology.

And soon, some of this technology will change how we drive and how our cars and trucks handle situations that often lead to crashes and deadly accidents.

"You'll be able to communicate with the car and get information through a screen in the car," explained Ryan Middleton, the software team leader for Delphi.

Middleton sat in the back street as we rode a pre-arranged course that showed how Delphi envisions the future of driving.

Software sensors and cameras in car allow it to continually send and receive information.

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That information includes:

  • Vehicle to Vehicle: Delphi says cars can determine where other vehicles are positioned on their road and surrounding roads.
  • Vehicle to Infrastructure: By getting a steady flow of data from street signs and traffic lights, cars will be able be navigate traffic more efficiently.
  • Pedestrian Alerts: The Delphi system tracks smartphone signals from pedestrians and those on bicycles so the car can slow down or avoid accidents.

"That's a preventable tragedy," said Jeff Owens, Chief Technical Officer for Delphi.

"But if you can get an alert the pedestrian is there and see with sensors and cameras that a pedestrian may be moving into the path of the vehicle and have the vehicle take corrective action, we could really reduce the statistics significantly."

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports 4,735 pedestrians were killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2013.

That same year, 743 bicyclists died in vehicle crashes according to the Federal Government.

It won't be long until will we see some or all of the technology from Delphi in vehicles being driven every day.

Delphi is the primary supplier behind super cruise control which will be offered in Cadillac's later this year.

Those are the first GM models that will allow drivers to operate their cars and SUV's hands free for limited periods of time.

Other automakers are also developing similar systems and Owens believes the Federal Government will have rules in place by 2019 that would make vehicle to vehicle communication standard in all new vehicles.

"You need cars to talk with each other," said Owens.

Questions? Comments?