Car Lights of the Future

We’ve all thought about what futuristic cars will be like. Self-driving cars are just around the (proverbial) corner, so engineers around the globe are quite literally making their dreams a reality today.

We expect endless new gadgets and technologies, but how about something fundamental, like lights? What will they look like? What will they convey?

Currently, our cars flash in a way perfectly adjusted to how we drive. With cars being driven in almost the same way for over 100 years, it stands to reason that with the biggest change in operation we’ve ever seen will come the biggest reimagining of the way lighting is used.

Before you get sleepless nights pondering the subject, have a quick whiz through what we’ve come up with.

Here are our car lights of the future.

‘Autopilot’ Lights


If cars are driving themselves, as pedestrians (if we still get to walk around on pavements and cross roads) we need a way of seeing if these speeding robots are online. How else are we to decide when it’s truly safe to jump in front of one?

So these green rooftop lights will tell all who see it that the car is being driven by the computer system. The lights change colour depending on the mode they are in.

Human driving

It goes without saying that with lights for when the computer is driving, there will be even more vivid ones for when something as unreliable as a human is in control. Probably red . . .

Emergency blue light mode

It seems reasonable that our cars will double up as ambulances. Flashing blue lights indicate when a car is put in emergency mode.

In emergency mode, the car only takes you to the nearest hospital, and the program it runs allows it to safely speed through traffic; all other cars know to pull over in the most efficient way. This also cuts down on related accidents.

The car can also run medical diagnostics on the patient, assessing whether an ambulance is required - but let's get back to our self-appointed area of expertise: Lighting.

For a blue light system to work, each time the car is put into ‘blue light mode’ it will be logged and investigated to prevent abuse. The upside is, over all, it will significantly cut down on wasted time for paramedics, and has the potential to get patients to hospital more quickly.

Accident drones


Taking the emergency lights one step further, why not also have accident drones deployed to warn other traffic of a problem? In the (hopefully unlikely) event of an accident, these drones fly out from the car flashing warning messages to oncoming traffic to prevent further accidents.

Maybe this is a little more far-fetched, but we’d all like to live in a world with more computerised drones . . . Right?

Door Floor Space


What about a built-in projector that warns you, and oncoming traffic, the space that your door will occupy when opened? As you pull the handle, the door projector activates, showing you the fully open door space.

This encourages the passengers to pay attention as they open the door, and allows oncoming drivers/cars to detect the light and re-route to avoid a collision.

This should also minimise amount of cycle accidents caused by open doors.

Colour Changing Panels

As we have explored in our article on the best customisations for a BMW, the colour you choose when purchasing your car can make a significant difference to re-sale value. So how about a car where clever LEDs can change the colour of your car on a daily basis? Feeling passionate? Try red. Melancholy? It’s got to be blue!

We’ve seen similar technology develop for a few years now, so a refined version could emit just enough colour to seem real and not pretentious.

Advertising space


Our lovely AutoeBid ad represents a future avenue for a service like Google AdSense. Having high definition LCDs built into the side panels could lead to ad generating revenue from your car.

The panel will be served ads depending on your location, and pay you based on the traffic in the area. It could also be integrated into the above colour-changing technology.

Don’t feel like advertising? Choose from patterns or photos to occupy the high-definition side screens.

All in All . . .

These are just our musings, but one thing is for sure: whatever is in store for the future of car lighting, it's sure to be bright!

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