September 14th, 2020 by Fix Auto USA
It’s the day of your big presentation and in fifteen minutes all eyes will be on you – that is, if you can get there in time. There you are, driving around and around the parking garage until it finally dawns on you: there are no spots left – well, except for one impossibly tight space. That’s when you wish you had a self-parking car!
Instead of struggling to maneuver your car back and forth, you simply press a button, sit back, and relax. It may sound straight out of the Jetsons but get ready, because the automatic parking car era has arrived!
How does a self-parking system work?
A self-parking system uses sensors or cameras to “see” other objects – in this case, the parked cars along the street – to determine the distance to the curb and the park space size. The sensors receive and transmit the data to the computer system. When instructed, the driver must gently release the brake pedal to move the car into the parking space. Once the process is initiated, the computer system takes control of the power steering wheel.
Let’s take a look at how a self-parking system would be used to parallel park your car. First, your vehicle would begin maneuvering itself next to the car in front of your target parking spot, then notify you when to stop. The driver would be instructed to shift the car into reverse and gradually release the brake to go backwards. The computer would then activate the power steering system and navigate the car into the parking spot perfectly. Finally, a voice would announce that the car is now parked. With some models, a dashboard computer screen would notify you each time that you need to take action, such as shift into reverse, come to a complete stop, or take your foot off the brake.
Benefits of self-parking cars
A self-parking system can make an impossibly tight, sweat-inducing parking spot a piece of cake. And it’s clearly a godsend for people who never learned how to properly park a car. Self-parking cars can also help reduce traffic problems and congestion in dense urban areas. We’ve all been stuck behind a car as the hapless driver tries to parallel park and ends up blocking a whole lane and disrupting the flow of traffic. Since self-parking systems speed up the amount of time it takes to parallel park a car, that scenario shouldn’t happen as much anymore. And finally, while dents and scratches to the bumper will never go away entirely, they should be significantly reduced as more cars on the road are equipped with self-driving technology.
While most self-parking systems assist with parallel parking, the next frontier, which is coming soon, will be horizontal spaces. Also, in spite of its name, a self-parking car is not an automatic parking car. The system can’t park a car without the driver’s participation; it’s a joint effort. Finally, self-parking cars don’t recognize and respond to changes in the parking space, such as a jogger briefly passing by.
With self-parking cars, drivers now essentially have a copilot. But when you’re in the driver’s seat, be vigilant, alert, and always practice safe driving habits. If you find yourself in a car accident and need reliable collision repair, Fix Auto USA is open for business and ready to serve you.
This blog post was contributed by Fix Auto Burbank, a leading industry expert and collision repair shop servicing Downtown Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley.