Technology is transforming all areas of life and motoring is no exception. These days, cars are packed with useful technology which not only make it easier for the driver, but also safer for everyone.
Ford launched its all-new Fiesta at this year's Geneva Motor Show. The latest version of the hatchback features a whole host of assistive technologies, making it the most technologically advanced small car in the UK at the moment.
These are some of the assistive technologies currently to be found on the next-generation Fiesta which you should look out for no matter what car you buy next.
The next-generation Fiesta is the first to featured an enhanced version of Pre-Collision Assistant with Pedestrian Detection.
In the Fiesta's case, this detects anyone in or near the road ahead or if someone crosses the vehicle's path using cameras and sensors at the front of the car. At night, the car's headlights detect pedestrians instead.
The driver is alerted when a possible collision risk is detected. Should the driver not respond in time, the system can automatically apply anything up to full braking force in a bid to reduce the collision's severity or even eliminate it altogether.
Many cars already come with some form of parking assistance, which really takes the hassle out of squeezing your car into those tighter spaces.
Active Park Assist with Perpendicular Parking helps the driver find a suitable space and parks it for them, nose-to-tail and side-by-side – all the driver has to do is perform forward and reverse manoeuvres, following guidance from the system. The system applies the brakes if the driver fails to respond correctly.
Blind spot information
Those pesky blind spots are a little less risky thanks to the likes of Blind Spot Information System with Cross Traffic Alert, which simply uses detectors on both sides of your vehicle and alerts you if anything moves into your blind spot zone.
The Cross Traffic Alert element warns you whenever another vehicle approaches the back of your car when you're in reverse.
Lane keeping alerts
A camera mounted behind the windshield's rear view mirror monitors road lane markings and notices when you drift towards the outside of a lane. When such an unexpected movement is detected an alert is sent to the driver to tell them to stay in lane.
Ford SYNC 3
Although voice-activated assistants such as Ford's SYNC 3 don't fall under the assistive technology bracket on the spec sheet, it is unbelievably helpful to drivers.
While navigation is offered, a useful SYNC Emergency Assistance technology could help in the case of an accident by placing a direct emergency 112 call with details of your location and in the local language.
The next-generation Fiesta goes on sale this spring, starting at £12,715.