Continental’s Transparent Trailer technology was recently recognized with a 2021 CES Innovation Award in the Vehicle Intelligence and Transportation product category. The new product completes an award-winning portfolio of trailering technology now available from Continental, the company notes.
“Engineering solutions that support drivers in various conditions is always our focus at Continental, and that includes technology for safer, more efficient towing,” said Arnaud Lagandré, head of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems, Continental North America. “We know how challenging and stressful it can be to maneuver a vehicle-trailer combination. Continental’s intelligent suite of trailering technology is designed to change that, bringing together innovative technologies that complement one another to serve the driver. Our team is honored to be recognized as a CES Innovation Award Honoree, exemplifying this commitment to increasing road safety.”
The Transparent Trailer technology allows drivers to “see through” a trailer in haul and check the surrounding area. Based on Continental’s Surround View system, a key component for the trailering portfolio, the technology enables safer driving while towing. Two cameras and a control unit work together to provide a panoramic view that renders the trailer virtually invisible. The result is a seamless live feed for drivers to see the road and any obstacles behind or beside the trailer.
Another feature in the company’s trailering portfolio, enabled by Continental’s Short Range Radar, is Trailer Merge Assist with Trailer Length Detection, which was selected for a 2017 CES Innovation Award and earned the company a Supplier of the Year Award from FCA in 2019. The first-of-its-kind system is a "black box" sensor mounted in the rear/side area of the vehicle that enhances and extends blind spot detection through sophisticated object tracking, measurement and length detection algorithms.
To successfully back up a trailer, the driver must navigate two vehicles at once—oftentimes with the truck going one way and the trailer going the other. First unveiled in 2015, Continental’s Trailer Reverse Assist makes it safer and easier to back up and park vehicles with trailers, according to the company. It utilizes an Intelligent Rear Camera Module and can be integrated with the vehicle's 360-degree Surround View system for enhanced viewing and trailer detection. With this, drivers are able to see a projected trailer path on the vehicle's center console screen and control the trailer direction with a knob, helping to reduce the stress of backing trailers into tight spots. The technology could also enable a remote-control feature to back up and park the trailer from outside the vehicle.
Continental’s Automated Trailer Hitching further reduces stress for drivers by making trailer hitching as easy as the press of a button. The technology detects the trailer using the vehicle’s intelligent rearview camera and then calculates the vehicle’s optimal path to it. When creating a path, the technology accounts for and avoids all objects, whether static or in motion. In the future, the system will have the capability to automatically adjusts the vehicle’s air suspension system to ensure the proper height. It can be utilized directly from the driver’s seat or from outside the vehicle through wireless app control.
The final piece in Continental’s intelligent trailering portfolio, Trailer Stability Assist, supports safer driving with a trailer. The technology automatically detects any snaking or swaying of a trailer and responds by stabilizing it with alternating brake interventions. Integrated with Continental’s electronic brake system, the solution will also optionally reduce the vehicle and trailer velocity by decreasing engine torque and increasing pressure in all-wheel brakes for deceleration until the oscillation stops.
Committed to making driving and maneuvering a trailer safer and more efficient, Continental is currently working on a solution that would allow the driver to park the vehicle with a trailer in tow automatically by scanning a parking scene and utilizing the onboard radar and camera sensors to offer the best possible parking spots. The user can then select to initiate the automatic parking maneuver. Additionally, based on Continental’s Surround View System, the company is developing a solution to help prevent the vehicle and trailer from colliding with obstacles while turning, be it another vehicle, curb or other obstruction.
“Continental’s complete suite of state-of-the-art trailering technology was designed to change the way people feel about driving with a trailer,” added Lagandré. “It makes driving and maneuvering a trailer safer and more manageable for all.”
Visit www.continental.com/en-us for more information.