Because the NHTSA’s Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards have been tightened considerably for all new vehicles sold in the U.S, hybrid and electric cars are becoming increasingly attractive – both to car manufacturers and to the average buyer. Within this new framework, the Internet of Things (IoT) is playing a pivotal role in monitoring vehicles, maintaining data, and mitigating potential problems on the road. Hybrids from companies like Toyota, Lincoln, Ford and Chevrolet rely on the IoT to obtain real-time data on aspects such as vehicle maintenance, battery power and the like. Read on to discover the way in which hybrids are able to make your experience on the road exactly how you envision it to be.

Learning The Driver’s Lifestyle

IoT can make things easier for hybrid/electric vehicle drivers, with manufacturers focusing on offering drivers a personalized experience. The Peugeot instinct is a good example of how IoT platforms can work for this purpose. Relying on the Samsung ArtikTM Cloud, which syncs up to all the user’s devices (think tablets, smartphones, smartwatches and the like), the car can ‘learn’ the user’s preferences, using these to pre-configure settings such as driving mode, preferred lighting configurations, audio and interface settings. How would this work in practice? Imagine you had to get to work half an hour earlier than usual for an important meeting. Your digital diary and your car’s navigator would synchronize, proposing you left x minutes earlier to get to your meeting on time. As you stepped into your car, you would continue listening to the song you were enjoying during breakfast. When you started the car, your front door would lock immediately. 

Reducing Fuel Consumption

One of the main factors driving the choice to drive a hybrid or electric vehicle is the desire for reduced fuel consumption and energy use. The less fuel the car consumes, the better for the air pollution index. The Internet of things connects all parts of the car to a grid, which gives the driver real time data on battery power and the condition of the vehicle. By keeping these components at optimal levels, batteries work better, cars are charged when required, communication systems are improved, and the car can be kept in a better overall condition.

Modes Of Driving

IoT would enable drivers to count on their vehicle’s assessment of the best mode to utilize to get where they want as quickly and safely as possible. Because their vehicles would align with their schedules, the car could automatically choose the shortest route, selecting a road that has less traffic and driving autonomously along curves drivers might find less comfortable to negotiate. As soon as it joined up with the usual part of the driver’s route, it would then switch to a more dynamic driving system controlled by the driver.

 Real-Time Information And Setting Controls

Hybrid car makers such as Hyundai (check out the new KONA Hybrid) are creating new connectivity systems that allow drivers to control the car via voice technology. Thus, orders can be given to the vehicle, which can display information in audio, video or navigation form. Real-time information can be gleaned regarding traffic conditions, the weather, nearby restaurants and venues, nearby parking spots and fuel stations. Imagine that you want your car to only travel the miles it can without relying on fuel, or you wish to limit the time period or geographical location you (or someone using your car) is to drive in. IoT allows users to use their smartphone, watch, or similar device to set precise controls – including geo-fencing and setting ‘curfews.’

Remote Comfort

Drivers can execute various remote commands, including remote programming of charging times. Vehicles like the Nissan Leaf and Citroen Aircross A5 allow drivers to do so, thanks to apps with remote charge technology. These apps offer additional controls such as climate control timing, remote charge start, and state of charge reporting – so they can calculate how much time is left before they are ready to go. They can also check aspects such as battery capacity and remaining fuel range and mileage. Finally, dedicated apps give drivers advice on how to get the most mileage from their hybrid (including advice on how to save fuel).

IoT is making driving far more practical and personalized than it was in the past. Features such as remote programming and connectivity with everyday apps mean that drivers can control everything from the temperature of their car to their time of arrival – sometimes by letting the car take control. In a few years, hybrids will probably give way to fully electric cars, which will undoubtedly have a wide range of features that will make driving even more pleasurable.