The automobile industry is on the brink of a crucial transformation that is all set to disrupt the traditional cars. Internet and modern technologies like Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning are going to makeover the cars. With consumers being able to visualise this next change, they are already impatiently waiting for cars that they always dreamt of. The Indian car market over the last half century has been a witness to a lot of changes. Although in nascent stage when compared to what is yet to come, connected systems are already a part of Indian cars. With industry giants integrating infotainment connectivity and GPS systems in vehicles in most of the cars today, the technological transformation is closer than we can imagine. TrafficInfraTech speaks to a few OEMs to understand the connected vehicles scenario in India and world-over.
Presently, of all automobiles available in India, it is estimated that somewhere between two to three percent has some primary form of connectivity. However, as seen with smartphone usage, aspirations and applications of latest technology are on the rise in India. It is almost certain that the acceptance, and hence demand, for connected vehicles will grow exponentially across the country over the next few years.
Where the connected cars stand today is just the tip of the iceberg. There is a vast scope of building cars that will be autonomous. Thus, sitting in the comfort of your car, you will be able to navigate, listen to music of your choice, book services, schedule meetings and much more with the assistance of infotainment system and telematics.
The global automobile market is worth, $2.4 trillion and a substantial GDP contributor towards GDP of many countries. The Indian passenger car market is one of the fastest expanding markets, with the volume sales of the country now standing at a strong 4th position globally, crossing Germany. They are expected to be on the number three spot by the year 2020. By 2026, the country is expected to generate up to $300 billion annual revenue.
MG Motor recently unveiled its hybrid SUV Hector which has been dubbed as India’s first Internet-enabled car. The 48V hybrid SUV comes with 19 exclusive features that make it the new benchmark in its segment.
“The MG Hector, India’s first Internet car, has been built with a high-level of localisation and comes power-packed with features, inside-out,” said, Rajeev Chaba, President and Managing Director, MG Motor India. Hector promises to deliver safe, connected and fun experiences with the biggest HD touchscreen in its segment at 10.4 inches. The Hector will also be the first car with a sophisticated 48-volt mild-hybrid architecture in its segment.
Hyundai Motor India Limited has pulled out all stops to ensure that the new and upcoming Hyundai Venue subcompact SUV will be India’s first ever connected car. The Hyundai Venue will get the company’s ‘BlueLink’ connected technology and it will have 10 India-only features with a total of 33 connectivity features. Some of the features that BlueLink will offer in India are geo-fencing, speed alerts, SOS, panic notifications, destination sharing, and road-side assistance and so on. Hyundai said that it has tested its BlueLink technology rigorously in India, keeping the conditions in mind along with the needs of the customers. This also includes voice guidance and recognition in Indian-accented English which means that the software will be able to recognise spoken English from different regions in India. The Hyundai Venue will also have remote-control operated functions such as climate control, horn and headlamps on, vehicle status, engine start/ stop and so on. The best thing is that Hyundai BlueLink can use your smartphone interface as a remote control.