What Dealers Need to Know about Vehicle-to-Vehicle Communication

The New York International Auto Show (NYIAS) kicks off this week with an inaugural Empire State of Mobility Conference, being held in advance of the 10-day public auto show. We’ll be watching for developments from this event, including technologies such as vehicle-to-vehicle communication which are revolutionizing the automotive industry.

In December 2016, the U.S. Department of Transportation proposed a rule that would require automakers to include vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) technologies in all light-duty vehicles. But Cadillac is not waiting to see how the ruling plays out. The automaker has announced that its 2017 CTS sedan will be the first auto in the U.S. market to include a V2V communication as a standard feature. Dealerships need to understand how and why V2V is taking hold.

What is Vehicle-to-Vehicle (V2V) Technology?

V2V technology makes it possible for autos to communicate with each other. With V2V technology, automobiles can share critical information such as safety hazards on the road. And the U.S. Department of Transportation is a big believer in the power of V2V.

Notes the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NTSA), V2V technology “shows great promise in transforming the way Americans travel.” On its website, the NSTA also comments that “Using V2V technology, vehicles ranging from cars to trucks and buses to trains could one day be able to communicate important safety and mobility information to one another that can help save lives, prevent injuries, ease traffic congestion, and improve the environment.”

Case in point: Cadillac’s V2V system will perform a variety of safety-related functions. For instance, as shown in the following video, Cadillacs equipped with V2V can warn a driver about hazards such as fast-approaching congestion on a highway, cars speeding toward an intersection, disabled vehicles on the road, or slippery conditions:

Cadillac compares the experience to being able to see around a blind corner. The V2V-equipped Cadillacs have a range of 1,000 feet, and they communicate only with other V2V-enabled Cadillacs. Even still, the Cadillac announcement is a start.

How V2V Works and Why It Matters

Since V2V communication relies on cellular networks for autos to talk with each other, the advent of more sophisticated 5G mobile systems — still a few years off — will likely be a catalyst for better and more widespread V2V automobiles. But with the U.S. Department of Transportation making V2V a priority, auto dealers should keep an eye on this development to understand what’s around the corner. According to the NTSA, V2V devices could eliminate or mitigate 80 percent of accidents not attributed to driver impairment — so it’s unlikely that the NTSA will back down from its commitment to a V2V-enabled auto industry.

What V2V Means for Dealers

Auto dealers should watch closely for other auto makers to follow Cadillac’s lead. They should monitor news from OEMs and third-party insight from sources such as Cars.com to anticipate and respond to questions their customers may be asking, including questions about the maturity of V2V systems and the issue of data security. In due course, “coming soon” will become “here and now” with V2V. Will your sales team be ready?

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