TOKYO, Oct. 18 (UPI) -- Japanese carmaker Nissan says it plans to sell cars with "steer-by-wire" technology within a year.
The technology is common in aircraft, where it is dubbed "fly-by-wire," but the Japanese firm said it would be the first to introduce a car system that sends electronic signals from the steering wheel to a computerized unit that then controls the movement of the tires, rather than using mechanical links.
Drivers would see an improved driving experience since their steering input would be transmitted to the wheels faster than by using a hydraulic and mechanical system, Nissan said.
Some previous computer-assisted car systems have proved troublesome.
In 2004 some Mercedes-Benz customers complained the company's Sensotronic brake-by-wire system -- which used an electrical link to control vehicles' brake pads -- sometimes failed.
Although the cars had a traditional hydraulic backup system, the complaints eventually led to Mercedes-Benz dropping the feature.
Nissan said it would install a backup clutch system in its steer-by-wire vehicles to link up their steering wheels and tires in the event of a problem.
One analyst said he thought the technology would find acceptance.
"I think initially people will find it a bit spooky but will be reassured by the fact there is a mechanical back-up if required," Jay Nagley, managing director of a British auto consulting firm, told the BBC.
|Additional Technology Stories|
TORONTO, May 25 (UPI) --A Canadian man has been charged with sexually assaulting a 9-year-old girl in Toronto more than 20 years ago.
BURBANK, Calif., May 24 (UPI) --Baz Luhrmann's big-screen adaptation of the classic novel, "The Great Gatsby," has crossed the $100 million mark at the North American box office.
BRUSSELS, May 24 (UPI) --Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC says the European launch of its "Facebook phone" has been delayed following disappointing U.S. sales and negative reviews.