Cars are getting pretty smart these days. They’ll lane correct, keep a gap between you and the car in front and even do some of the driving for you. And the new Toyota Yaris Cross will help you in situations you might not think about a lot: when you crash or if your car gets stolen.
Launched this month, the SUV version of the Toyota Yaris is the first from the carmaker to have its ‘Toyota Connected Services’, a communications network built around 4g capability and it’s own proprietary ‘data communications module’.
These features are being rolled out in Australia with help from Japanese telco KDDI and Australian technology company Intelematics.
When you get the car, it’ll already be able to do some pretty nifty things.
According to Toyota, the Yaris Cross will automatically call a 24/7 emergency call centre and tell them where you are if you crash and you require help, or if the airbag goes off.
On top of that, the Toyota Yaris Cross has an SOS button on the overhead console that’ll do the same thing.
And if someone steals your car, Toyota will be able able to track the vehicle’s location using this same feature.
It’s worth noting that location information will only be provided directly to the police, thwarting any attempt to use this capability for nefarious reasons.
Of course, all of these features will only work if you’re in 4G range.
So, this is what the Toyota Yaris Cross (and future cars with Toyota’s Connected Services’) can do right now.
But where all this really gets interesting is in the future. Toyota promises that this technology will allow the cars to talk to each other and even with infrastructure.
This, in turn, paves the way for fully autonomous driving where your vehicle can talk to all the other cars and objects around it.
Toyota is hoping that other carmakers will jump on board with this standard. There’s a lot of potential if they do — but even if not, the Toyota Yaris Cross will still have a few tricks up its sleeve.