From Tesla’s Cybertruck to a reborn VW Microbus, the trend toward more and more varied electric vehicles will only accelerate in 2020. New startups touting the next advancement in electric vehicles will likely appear. While the “electrification” trend is already well underway, there are other moves going on in the auto industry that also promise to transform the car driving, car buying, and the car insurance experience for autos of the future. Top auto trends for 2020 include:
More bandwidth! It’s beyond the kids each watching a different HD video wirelessly on their own devices—Wi-Fi in the car will become standard and synching abilities will improve. Drivers and passengers will expect uninterrupted access to apps, games, music, and more. The car itself needs a lot of bandwidth, too—makers are announcing beefed-up digital platforms to gather and upload all the data that cars will be collecting and reporting about driver and passenger preferences. This includes everything from temperature and seat position, to traffic conditions and driving habits.
Beyond the “check engine” light, your car will be able to make specific predictions about potential failures in critical parts or systems and alert you to get maintenance now to head off expensive repairs, or even dangerous breakdowns in the near future. Vehicles will receive updates remotely. Some traditional vehicles boast this feature, but you’ll see that many electric cars have it. Just keep in mind that while your electric vehicle provides recommendations, you should still know how to properly service it. Additionally, AI in the car may even be able to tell if you are getting overexcited, distracted or sleepy and need to refocus on safe driving.
It’s not just carmakers who are analyzing vast amounts of data about cars and their drivers—insurance companies are doing it, too. Expect continued growth in “usage-based” car insurance packages, giving price breaks to drivers whose habits read as less risky. Of course, this depends on your willingness to share driving data directly with your insurance company, including things like how far the car goes in how much time, “hard braking,” and even where your car goes most often. If you’re a safe driver who is willing to share data and use car insurance apps, you might save money on car insurance.
Hacking and Privacy Awareness
All that tech in the car is tempting to hackers, and carmakers will be under pressure to explain what they’ve done to secure your digitized vehicle and the data it collects. You may see public service announcements and other information campaigns intended to educate drivers on the privacy risks of “always connected” vehicles.
Customize and evaluate new car models without visiting a showroom until you’ve decided what you want, how much you’ll pay, how you’ll finance it and are ready to pick up your new car.
Not Quite Ready for Self-Driving Cars
Most of the above innovations are well into development, and versions of them are already available in some models. The one advancement that isn’t quite here yet is the fully autonomous, or self-driving, car. Automakers are finding ways to share data and expertise using AI and the cloud to process a myriad of inputs and develop safer smarter autonomous cars.
All this innovation moves quickly, and new, improved models will cycle into the pipeline more quickly. No one is quite sure if this means more leasing and less buying, or new types of financing to accommodate more frequent model upgrades. What it does mean is that top auto trends for 2020 should make it an exciting year in new car models, with many new, digitized options to consider.