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The future of the automotive industry has never been closer that in 2020. Although self-driving flying cars are a far cry away, we can still expect innovations that will make driving easier, more fun, and safer. These include biometrics, airless tires, smart protective gear like helmets, solar-powered cars, etc.

Since the chances are high that you will come in contact with at least one of these technologies, you should learn more about them. They might not become widespread this year but the future belongs to these automotive innovations.


The use of biometrics

Although the use of the term biometrics brings up images of a sci-fi movie with cyborgs, the reality is quite different. New car models will be able to detect your pulse using sensors placed inside the driver’s seat. The vehicle will know the state you are in when sitting behind the wheel and in some cases, it can even lock the steering column if it senses that you are not OK.

In order for a fully-autonomous car to hit the streets and become mass-produced, the vehicle should be programmed to know more about the driver. The machine will be able to tell if you’re not paying enough attention to driving the car and optimize safety systems accordingly. Finally, biometrics will become handy in case of a crash but they can be used for entertainment as well.


Switching from lithium-ion to carbon-ion batteries

When it comes to electric cars and other non-diesel vehicles, batteries are definitely the biggest issue. Their insufficient capacity is the biggest obstacle in the proliferation of green vehicles. However, lithium-ion batteries are likely to get supplanted with carbon-ion batteries and this change starts in 2020.

The concept of batteries is less expensive to produce and use than existing battery technologies. Furthermore, it is safer and offers the ability to charge the car in just five minutes with enough power to last for nearly 500 kilometers! Such a range is on par with traditional combustion engine vehicles.



The introduction of smart helmets

Apart from car drivers, motorcyclists can also expect to see changes in 2020. The advent of smart helmets promises a safer driving experience for everyone on two wheels, cyclists and even pedestrians included. The helmets of the future will feature high-visibility features that will enhance motorists’ skills.

These helmets will have turn signals and taillights built inside them, thus increasing the visibility of cyclists. Furthermore, they could be sync with the driver’s smartphone through an app to play music and display navigational charts. Like with car biometrics, a smart helmet will be able to detect a serious fall and instantaneously alert emergency services.


Tires you needn’t inflate

World’s leading tire production companies like Michelin and Bridgestone have been working long and hard on the concept of airless tires. The need for such tires was always present among military personnel, as military vehicles are only one shot away from being incapacitated.

However, civilian tire manufacturers have disseminated this concept and started introducing this design into other car models. In 2020, car manufacturers will offer the installation of these tires on a large number of models. Cars that use airless tires technology will benefit from no flat tires, no need to have a spare and improved eco-friendliness. However, most airless tires do produce more noise and vibration that the ones you inflate.


Cars running on solar energy

Ever since someone got the idea to place solar panels on the roof of a residential structure, engineers have been researching how to successfully integrate a solar panel into the roof of a car. Needless to say, this is no easy undertaking but as technology advances, 2020 will witness the appearance of first solar-powered cars.

Nowadays, there are only a couple of models that use this technology, like a Toyota Prius or a Karma Revero. The problem with these models is the profit margin for both the manufacturer and the buyer is so thin that the cars are barely worth buying and producing.

As time progresses, the tiny panels are expected to become more sophisticated. Once you add the new carbon-ion batteries that will be able to store the energy generated from the Sun more efficiently, solar-powered cars might become profitable like any other vehicle on the car market today.



Smart sun visors in cars

For some models of smart helmets, the visor acts as a display screen. The same technology will be used in cars this year. The century-old concept of the sun visor is finally going to be upgraded, allowing for better visibility. A transparent LCD visor will be able to blackout only those sections that are affected by sunlight while driving.

The system is comprised of a driver-facing camera and powerful software. Anyone who has been blinded by glare will learn to appreciate this technology that is directed at solving practical issues drivers presently have and which has led to countless car accidents.


Mobile payment systems

What if we told you that in the future you can pay for goods and services not with your debit card but your car? As wacky as it may sound, this payment system will be tested more extensively in 2020. The basic principle is in-dash ordering that facilitates automated payment for everything you need on the road, like gas, tolls, parking, and snacks.

The best thing about it? You’ll never have to leave the driver’s seat.

The 7 seven trends listed here are just the tips of the iceberg when it comes to automotive innovations in 2020. There are so many development teams hard at work that it is impossible to predict all the surprises this year has installed for car enthusiasts.


About the author: Nina is a lifestyle blogger, yoga aficionado and a travel enthusiast with a distinctive taste for home decor. She’s passionate about learning new things and sharing meaningful ideas. In her free time, she loves to design clothes and furniture. If you wanna see what she’s up to you can find her on twitter