VOTING is open in the inaugural Sunday Times Motor Awards sponsored by Bridgestone.
We’ve used our motoring writers’ expert knowledge to produce shortlists of our top vehicles on sale this year, but most of the winners will be decided by you.
The winners, including the coveted Sunday Times Car of the Year and Jeremy Clarkson Car of the Year, will be announced at a star-studded event in October.
Here you can see the 2018 Car Tech of the Year contenders, and click through to vote for your favourite. Even better, by voting, you could win a holiday for two in Dubai.
Making the shortlist in the car technology are the Volkswagen Trailer Assist, BMW Wireless Charging Mat, Audi Pre-Sense Side Protection, Nissan xStorage, and Volvo and Amazon Key Delivery.
Our panel of experts looked for innovations that represent a step-change in innovation, making life notably safer or more convenient for customers.
Volkswagen Trailer Assist
Parking isn’t easy for everyone, and reverse parking with a trailer attached can challenge even the most accomplished drivers. That’s why VW’s Trailer Assist is such a clever bit of kit — it takes over the car’s steering to help customers park perfectly first time.
BMW Wireless Charging Mat
The electric toothbrush wouldn’t exist if it didn’t make it easier to brush teeth. By the same token, BMW’s new wireless charging system promises to take the fiddle out of living with any sort of electrically-powered car — even guiding drivers to the exact parking position so inductive charging can begin — and will mean no more untangling of charging leads, dirty hands or the increased chance of getting a soaking while plugging in during a downpour.
Audi Pre-Sense Side Protection
When one car hits another in the side, passengers are at their most vulnerable. To help prevent injury to occupants, Audi has developed Pre-Sense Side protection. It detects an imminent side impact and uses adaptive suspension (on cars fitted with it) to raise the car so that the impact is absorbed by the floorpan of the vehicle — one of the toughest parts of a car.
Nissan xStorage Home
The obvious flaw with electric cars is that the electricity has to come from somewhere, and while the National Grid is being cleaned up (slowly), fossil fuels still make up a large part of the mix. By equipping a home with Nissan xStorage system, sustainable solar energy from your own roof can be harvested in batteries that can then be used to charge an electric car or power a home, even when the sun has gone down.
What’s more, owners can sell surplus energy back to the Grid at times of high demand, helping balance the network. And unlike similar systems from rivals, the xStorage system makes use of certified used packs from Nissan Leaf cars, helping extend their life.
Volvo and Amazon Key Delivery
Amazon’s popularity boils down to how it makes shopping easy. Now the tech company is helping put an end to those times when you’re not at home to accept a delivery, by allowing packages to be delivered to your car.
Working with Volvo, it has been experimenting with Amazon Key, which allows deliveries to be made directly to your vehicle’s boot. Currently on trial in America, it could offer a glimpse of things to come for UK consumers.