High-Tech sensory steering wheel watches over Jaguar Land Rover drivers to help concentrate on the road using heat to tell them when to turn left or right.
Research in a joint venture Glasgow University created sensory steering wheel.
The Jaguar Land Rover-funded research is part of a PhD study by Patrizia Di Campli San Vito at Glasgow University.
“Parts of the steering wheel can get warm and cool to inform drivers where to turn when to change lane or to warn of an approaching junction.
It will be useful in poor visibility on the road or weather.
The carmaker has also applied the technology to the gear-shift paddles to indicate when handing over from the driver to autonomous control in future self-driving vehicles is complete.
Land Rover said driver distraction is a major contributor to road accidents around the world and accounts for 10 percent of all fatal crashes in the USA alone.
Jaguar Land Rover’s research suggests the current signal will be a way to keep drivers focused on the road.
The signal work on both sides of the steering wheel indicates into the direction to turn by warming or cooling one side by up to 6°C.
For comfort, a driver can adjust the range of temperature change.
Studies have shown temperature-based instructions used for non-urgent notifications, where vibrations attention-grabbing.
Jaguar Land Rover Electrical Research Senior Manager, Alexandros Mouzakitis said they can also use Thermal cues where audio feedback deems too disruptive to cabin conversations or media playback.
“Safety is a number one priority for Jaguar Land Rover.
We commit to improve our vehicles with the latest technological developments and preparing the business for a self-driving future,” said Mouzakitis.
“The ‘sensory steering wheel’ is all part of this vision, with thermal cues able to reduce time drivers, have to take their eyes off the road.”
Jaguar and Land Rover models already boast a wide range of sophisticated Advanced Driver Assistance Systems designed to improve driver and vehicle safety.