Gone are the days when we used to think that cars were just machines that get us from point A to B with a certain degree of convenience. If a vehicle enthusiast were to travel through time from the 1980s to today, the word “shock” would not even begin to explain the feelings and emotions he or she would go through. Cars have come so far in the last two decades, and the future holds even more promise of transforming cars into transportation machines that handle and look nothing like what we have today.
Features such as adaptive cruise controls, lane centering steering, automatic braking and steering, and self-parking steering are fast becoming basic. In the near future, almost all the cars on the roads, especially in first world nations, will have the ability to drive themselves, since there are already some driverless vehicles on the road today.
Vehicle manufacturers today are breaking barriers and stepping out into transforming their cars into smart machines that can make decisions on their own and communicate with each other. The autonomous vehicles are sure to reduce the number of accidents to almost nil, improve passenger experience in every way, increase the speeds on the roads, ensure we never take a wrong turn, and offer so much more.
Although there is still so much we expect from the cars in the future, these cars sure give us a clear glimpse of what to expect. These vehicles have the ability to park themselves, some require the driver to work the gears and brakes, but some do not need human input at all. Most of these are cars that hit the markets in 2016, just imagine how advanced the cars in 2017 will be.
15. The BMW 7 Series
Although the BMW 7 Series hit the market in 2015, it was still one of the best vehicles in 2016 in every way considering that it had the ability to park itself back then. This BMW was the most innovative vehicle in its class, and it set the foundation for which cars of the future would be built from. The level of technology, performance, and comfort in this vehicle make the driver and the passengers enjoy an unmatched luxury experience. Can you imagine a vehicle offering massaging seat functions and an expansive legroom at the back that can allow you to stretch out? That is just the beginning when it comes to what this vehicle offers. Since this BMW is on this list, it has the ability to park itself, although it is limited to nose-in parking. The good thing here is that the driver can step out of the car upon reaching the parking spot, command the car to park itself, and it will. The car will also get itself out of the parking spot on its own and wait for the driver to get in.
14. Toyota Prius
Although some movies and shows like Top Gear might have painted the Toyota Prius in bad light, it is still one of the most popular hybrid vehicles in the world and it is fast replacing models that insist on remaining in the past. The Prius is the best-selling hybrid vehicle in the world and it is helping to reduce the amount of pollution that vehicles emit every day that is damaging our environment because it is a hybrid with top-notch fuel saving technology. The 2016 Toyota Prius comes with a much smaller and lighter lithium-ion battery, it has occupant protection features, as well as crash-prevention technologies, all working together to protect the motorists. Since the Prius is the car for the future, this version has Intelligent Parking Assist, which makes it easy for a driver to part without the fear of mistakes. In addition, this Prius can also automatically unpack itself, a feature that most other vehicles on this list do not have.
13. 2016 Ford Focus
Since this list is not limited to luxury cars, the 2016 Ford Focus is a big relief for drivers whose pockets are not too deep, but want to enjoy the self-parking technology. Many “reasonably priced cars” are coming with this and even more technology and it seems like the 2016 Ford Focus is leading the pack. The Ford Focus uses Blue Oval’s Active Park Assist technology, which is just a few hundred dollars, peanuts compared to what other active park assist technologies cost. The technology in the Ford Focus also includes features such as the SYNC 3 infotainment system, 10-speaker Sony sound setup, and heated front seats. The Active Park Assist technology will require the driver to sit behind the wheel and operate the breaks and the accelerator. The driver needs to be keen since the technology does not replace the driver’s sense of judgement and attention, especially when it is raining heavily or where there may be objects that absorb ultrasonic waves.
12. Skoda Superb
Skoda Superb is one of the latest products that Skoda Auto, a Czech automobile manufacturer, released to the market last year, a car that has a cutting-edge exterior and a luxurious interior. People love Skoda because of its value for money, a feature that is also evident in the Superb, in addition to its amazing spacious interiors and beautiful razor-sharp headlights. Being an electric car built for the upmarket clientele, this car will arguably offer you as much pleasure driving it as the best ones on this list, in addition to looking great and helping you save a few dollars on its purchase. The SE, SE L Executive, and Sportline models have the park assist as an optional feature, whereas the Laurin and Klement trim come with it as a standard feature. This car will of course park better than you on your best day, but it will require that you operate the gear and brakes as it squeezes itself into that “impossible” parking space.
11. Volvo XC90
If you love Volvo, then you know just how great the brand new Volvo XC90 is, or at least you would know what to expect. This is without a doubt the safest, most luxurious, and most technologically-advanced Volvo we had in the market in 2016, which is why it has self-parking technology among other advances. This big and beautiful SUV might prove to be a challenge to some drivers when it comes to parking, but thanks to the park-assist system, drivers never need to worry about any type of parking. The Volvo Active Park Assist Pilot’s Xenium package comes with a panoramic sunroof made of powered glass as well as a 360° camera, of course for an additional cost. However, you will need to sit on the driver’s seat to control the car’s speed as it is parking itself; it will accelerate on its own, but you will need to apply the brakes a bit.
10. Volkswagen Golf
The Volkswagen Golf is an amazing piece of German engineering that has proven itself year after year that it is one of the best all-round vehicles in the market. This car might appear small, but it is the right size for anyone in the market for the most affordable, convenient, and technologically forward hatchback. Since this VW is on the list, it comes with a Park Steering Assistant, which will let the driver know whether the car can fit in a particular parking space and steer itself perfectly into such a space. The driver only needs to control the speed and the gears as the car parks itself. In addition to Park Assist, the technology built in here includes Front Assist, Adaptive Cruise Control, Blind Spot Monitor, Park Pilot, Rear Traffic Alert, and Lane Assist. All the above including a rear-view camera and a dashboard color display will come with a small cost, a cost that is worth every cent.
9. 2016 Lincoln MKS
The 2016 Lincoln MKS was the largest and most luxurious Lincoln sedan last year since the Lincoln Continental Flagship came to take over most of the glory early this year. However, the MKS is still one of the best cars out there, since it is fast, competent, and its luxury is reserved and definitely understated. The MKS is huge and can at times be a challenge to drivers in the city and pose an even bigger challenge when parking. However, the MKS’s Technology Package comes with an Active Park Assist, a system that uses sonar-based tech to identify parking spots and helps the driver to park with great ease. Upon engaging the Park Assist, the car takes over the steering and guides the driver on how and when to brake and step on the gas. In addition, this technology package comes with an adaptive cruise control that has brake support, a lane-keeping system, and collision mitigation.
8. 2016 Chrysler 200
The 2016 Chrysler 200 is an amazing vehicle, with its performance so good it can easily be the best mid-sized sedan in the market today. This amazing all-wheel-drive vehicle comes with a V6 engine, 295 horsepower, and it offers the drivers a great experience on the road owing to its amazing handling and comfortable interior with first-class cabin seats. This Chrysler has some of the latest technologies in the motor vehicle industry, technologies that include parking assistance, advanced brake assistance, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, and forward collision warning. This car will help a driver with Perpendicular and Parallel parking, meaning that parking problems will be ancient history as long as you have this car. As is the case with most other vehicles on this list, the parking assistance will take over all the difficult aspects involved, leaving you with controlling the brakes or intervening if you are not comfortable at any point.
7. 2016 Volkswagen Passat
The 2016 Volkswagen Passat is an outstanding vehicle that is a considerable improvement from the 2015 version. This vehicle has very attractive front and rear designs with standard LED headlights, a hands-free power-opening trunk, high-tech safety measures, Fender audio and so much more. In addition, this model comes with outstanding safety features, an infotainment system that is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and additional equipment at the disposal of the driver. This VW is on this list because it has a self-parking feature that makes parking easier than a walk in the park. With features such as a Parking Steering Assistant and Distance Controls, this car will find a parking space for you and help you to park with ease. Perpendicular and parallel parking will never be a problem for the driver since the self-parking feature deals with all the complicated aspects involved in any type of parking.
6. The Nissan Qashqai
The Nissan Qashqai is a small SUV that is truly an innovation that excites. The amazing design, the advanced technology, the dynamic handling, and the ultramodern connected features put the driver in a powerful position of total control. The amazing 7″ color touch screen makes accessing hands-free communications, navigation, and audio easy, which is made even easier with the car’s seamless connectivity to smartphones. In addition to all the exciting luxury features that the whole family will absolutely fall in love with, the Nissan Safety Shield Technologies built in offer a level of reassuring safety that everybody would love to feel on the road. This Nissan has an Intelligent Park Assist that guides the driver to park in even the tightest parking spots safely, easily, and quickly. The multiple sensors and cameras on the vehicle make bumping into things as you park almost impossible.
5. 2017 Cadillac CT6
The 2017 Cadillac CT6 is the definition of excellence in motor vehicle manufacturing, standing as a beacon of beauty and innovation, tied together with advanced technology built within a breath-taking design. This vehicle’s interior is an environment crafted with high-quality materials expertly put together to stimulate your senses in a way very few cars on the road can. One of the main reasons for launching this car in 2016 was to compete with the finest self-parking cars in the industry, an objective that General Motors achieved with great success. This car has an Advanced Park Assist technology that comes with automatic braking, meaning that the driver’s role during parking is almost insignificant. In addition, the car has a 360° video display, which initiates the moment the car senses danger. The full display video-based rear-view mirror in this car is the first of its kind in the industry, an impressive innovation that increases backward visibility in an amazing way.
4. 2016 Chevrolet Malibu
What is your idea of the ideal mid-sized car? Well, the 2016 Chevrolet Malibu is everything you can dream of and a bit more, because it features an amazing design, the most impressive safety measures, it allows for seamless connectivity, it has advanced technology, and it is exceptionally efficient. The spacious interior is tailored to give you and your passengers an exceptional ride, an unforgettable experience that will leave you looking forward to the next ride. You and especially the kids will love the Android/Apple smartphone integration, 4G LTE connectivity, Mobile Wi-Fi, and Bose audio, which are all part of the infotainment department. The safety features here are put together with you in mind since they include lane keeping assist, forward collision alert, front pedestrian alert, and of course the Automatic Parking Assist. As is the case with most other self-parking cars, you will never have to worry about perpendicular or parallel parking again, and your input in the parking will be minimum.
3. Tesla Model S
You will have to search long and hard before you find an electric car with technology that surpasses that of the Tesla Model S. This car has outstanding performance, its technology is both superior and friendly, and its safety is something you can depend on because the company claims that it is twice as good compared to the average driver. If you are in a rush to get to a meeting or you just can’t wait to hug your wife and children when you get home, this car will save you precious time. This car will park parallel or perpendicular, depending on the type of lot, it will drive itself in and out of the garage, and if you are willing to part with a few extra thousand dollars, you will get an Enhanced Autopilot package. Simply use your phone to summon your car and it will greet you at your front door and drop you off at your most convenient spot.
2. BMW i3
Although the new BMW i3 looks nothing like what we would expect from BMW, all else including the performance, the smart technology, and the amazing driving experience is everything we have come to love in BMW. The engineers here sought to maximize on this vehicle’s efficiency and technology, which are the main concerns of future cars. If you do not like how electric cars have a limited range, the i3 will offer you options that will make you smile. The all-electric power train will do 81 miles with only one charge, whereas the extended version will give you anywhere between 150 and 206 miles, owing to the gasoline power changeover. This futuristic car is so advanced that its park assist does not need a driver to control the gears or the speed, it will maneuver in whatever direction, switch gears, and park itself since it is fully automated. However, be prepared to part with a tidy sum if want you to enjoy the best of what this car has to offer.
1. 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
For a very long time, the Mercedes S-Class has been at the top of not only the luxury and great performing Mercedes-Benz vehicles, but of all the vehicles made in Germany and the world. However, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz E-Class is without a doubt taking over, thanks to the technology it comes with, making it one of the most innovative vehicles that saw the market in 2016. You will hardly find the technology in this E-Class in any other car ever made since it introduces the drivers to a future where vehicles can talk to each other as a way of protecting all road users. This Mercedes has a Parking Pilot that does everything for the driver, regardless of whether the parking required is parallel or perpendicular. In addition to taking over the wheel, the car handles the brakes, shifts the gears, and it can steer itself out of the parking spot with ease.
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