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Forget Hoverboards, Where’s My Flying Car?

Automotive News Dealer Website Dealerships Millennial & Gen Z technology

Technological advances in dealer websites pave the way for the future of cars.

Thanks to unfulfilled prophecies and elaborate sci-fi imagineering of the 20th century, a lot of people are still asking—Dude, where's my flying car?

Although the technology for flying personal transport is well within our reach, the practical safety of self-piloted flying cars has been stalled out.

The auto industry will keep its shiny side up and wheels on the ground for the foreseeable future. However, there will be changes in the next 10 - 20 years. Changes impacting personal mobility and most significantly, the auto industry that makes and sells these new means of conveyance.

The convergence of technological and social trends stoking a boom in alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) production — are the bellwether of the fundamental industry changes.

Focus on the Technology of Effective Selling

As tech advances continue to shape production and design of vehicles, the technology available to Auto Dealerships is also changing the way cars are sold.

According to 321 Ignition data, over 60% of car buyers prepare to visit dealership showrooms with up to 9 hours of webrooming. Webrooming a term coined to describe the reliance of Millennials and Generation Z on the internet preparation for major purchases.

To provide the right webroom environment for smart showroom shopping,  Auto Dealerships need to upgrade to the most up-to-date online platform for their own internet real estate … the website.

For example in an industry exclusive, the company is an exclusively Mobile First platform. Instead of designing for desktops and then optimizing for Mobile, 321 Ignition is ahead of the curve. This makes for a far superior User Experience and User Interface (UX /UI) ease of use, which is essential for attracting, retaining and closing sales to younger buyers.

Mobile-first Generation

The 321 Ignition mobile-first mission assures a clear, simple and intuitive design, layout, and site navigation features. It features the fastest loading times in the industry. If a website takes longer than 3 seconds to load, a dealer will lose half their traffic to a competing dealership.

The 321 Ignition platform is also driven by a User First obsession. That means that every feature of the website is designed to meet the needs of shoppers as opposed to easy shortcuts for web developers.

If you go to a dealership website loaded with widgets and screen within screen features, as opposed to straight HTML content, while it may be cost-effective for the web developer it ends up being clunky and awkward for customers!         

What Younger Car Buyers Want

Websites that are winning younger buyers offer transparent pricing and customizable features allowing them to find the right monthly payment.

Millennial and Gen Z buyers also want instant interfaces with insurance and warranty providers, CarFax reports and even direct links for shipping arrangements.

321 Ignition has incorporated this customer-first must-haves into its platform. Aiding it to become the industry-leading auto dealership digital marketing technology solution.   

Auto Dealerships Keeping Pace with Tech in Cars

Even though it feels like we are on the verge of major changes in auto technology, the forces of change in the auto industry have been at work for decades.

The fight for better fuel efficiency born from the oil crisis and gas lines of the mid-70s has led to breakthroughs in vehicle construction using strong but lightweight aluminum alloys. Including the replacement of steel fastening accessories with aerospace adhesives, as well as the fast proliferation of 48-volt mild hybrid systems on everything from small cars to pickup trucks.

All of these factors, coupled with the growth of Wifi connectivity and car-to-car communications that facilitate autonomous or self-driving systems, are creating a new mobility ecosystem promising faster, cleaner, safer, more efficient and more personalized travel options.

Enter Elon Musk

Meanwhile, the most controversial vision of the mobility future is the takeover of the autonomous vehicle. Fast-tracking this technology ahead of the de-bugging phase—most aggressively promulgated by iconoclastic visionaries like Elon Musk—has presented serious problems.

Even enthusiastic futurists like Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak have determined that universal use of autonomous vehicles is not practical.

Musk alongside his highly acclaimed Tesla brand promised the full flowering of the autonomous driving era by 2020. However, there have been a number of Tesla accidents and fatalities. These have resulted from the careless use of the tech that is still in the advanced research and development phase.

Aviators marine navigators and railway transport have used the same watchwords for 30 years—use the auto-pilot to handle routine or fatigue-inducing tasks, but never leave the cockpit, helm or engine controls unattended by human decision-makers.

Other approaches focusing on driver assistance and collision avoidance are more effective in the slow advancement of a self-driving vehicle future.

Partial list of carmakers ushering us into the autonomous vehicle age.

  1. Subaru
  2. Volvo
  3. Cadillac
  4. Nissan
  5. Infiniti
  6. BMW
  7. Mercedes
  8. Toyota/Lexus 

Nissan offers an object lesson in adopting and phasing into dramatic new self-driving technologies while insulating itself from adverse publicity and legal liability.

Nissan’s ProPilot systems use a combination of the following technology and main streamed it into its line-up without proposing autonomous driving.

  • Forward-facing cameras
  • Radar signals Digital sensors Electronic control modules (keeps the vehicle centered in the driving lane)
  • Adaptive cruise control (helps vehicle maintains a safe distance from the traffic ahead)
  • Sophisticated 360-degree visual reference
  • Collision avoidance cues and alarms.

Autonomous vehicles will most likely land in controlled environment areas, including closed-loop urban commuter districts and dedicated highway lanes. Commercial trucking may see autonomous vehicles on open highway routes. However, human drivers will take the wheel of the rigs as they enter high density residential and commercial districts.

25 Years and Counting

                   

Engineers have devoted nearly 25 years incorporating elements of car-to-car communication in autonomous. Communication is vital for them to safely operate on roadways. Therefore, until there is comprehensive car-to-car communication full-scale self-driving technology may never be completely safe.

As a result, the on-demand ride-share industry will eventually coalesce with autonomous driving technology. Therefore, creating subscription memberships for shuttle services systems for personal use.

Personal transportation models in rural and inter-urban areas will change only inasmuch as vehicles increase in sophistication.

To sum up, people pining over promises of flying cars will likely see airborne fleets delivering cargo and passengers in the future. They will be controlled similarly to central station command facilities the military drone systems have used for the last 25 years.