Some cars rolling off assembly lines around the world today are packed with cutting-edge technology that would make fictional British intelligence officer James Bond jealous. From on-board WiFi hotspots to electric vehicles that reduce emissions without sacrificing performance, technology has found its way into many of today’s new cars, including some best-selling makes and models.
Here are the top five high-tech vehicles on the road today.
Tesla Model S – Many car enthusiasts believe this car is a glimpse into the future. Finally, an electric vehicle has been introduced that not only matches its gas-powered rivals in several key areas, but actually surpass them in many. The Tesla Model S is an American-designed and manufactured electric car that is the rival of the best cars in the world. If you’d like to drive one but can’t afford the hefty price tag, you can rent one from Hertz.
Volkswagen XL1 – Produced in extremely limited numbers and only available in Europe as a 2014 model year vehicle, the Volkswagen XL1 is one of the most advanced cars in the world. Think of it as the Bugatti Veyron (the current fastest production car in the world and one of the most expensive as well) of economy cars. With a hybrid powertrain, extremely low coefficient of drag, heavy use of lightweight (and incredibly strong) carbon fiber and advanced seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, the futuristic XL1 can achieve… wait for it… 280 miles per gallon of fuel.
BMW i-Range – The BMW M-division has long been known for producing fire-breathing versions of the company’s more sedate sedans and coupes, including the M3 and M5. With the introduction of the i3 city car and i8 supercar at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show, BMW has launched a whole new line of cars – one that takes an entirely different approach to performance. Featuring heavy use of carbon fiber, advanced powertrains (an electric motor coupled with a fuel-efficient turbo engine in the case of the i8; a purely electric powerplant in the case of the i3), and dual-clutch transmissions, the i8 and i3 aim to provide the best possible performance in their classes with the lowest environmental impact. For the i8, that means a top speed of more than 180mph while delivering more than 80 miles per gallon of fuel. And like the XL1, both i-cars look like they came straight from the future.
Mercedes-Benz S-class – Mercedes has traditionally used the S-class as a test bed for future technologies, and the newest model is no different. According to many, the 2014 S-class is the most technologically advanced road car the company has ever made. The features of the S-class are so abundant that merely listing them all seems like overkill. Never the less, these features include a multi-link Airmatic air suspension with a road-sensing system that pre-loads the shocks for the road surface detected; an interior that includes among its option list a energizing hot-stone massage, a fragrance system, and a five-theme interior-illumination system; an infrared heads-up display to detect persons or animals in the road at night; and a Dieter Burmester audio system.
Google Car – It may look like an ordinary Toyota Prius. It’s not. It drives itself. Enough said. Suffice to say, you can expect to see this technology in your car in the next 20 years or so.
Author Bio: Jessica is a freelance journalist who loves to cover technology news and the ways that technology makes life easier. She also blogs at FreshlyTechy.com. Check her out on Twitter @TechyJessy.