What can’t cars do these days? It seems like we witness innovations every day, yet we are still stunned every time a manufacturer announces another groundbreaking feature. Volkswagen is the latest brand to make some waves. The German automaker is integrating a familiar smart technology into the 2021 Volkswagen Touareg in a whole new way.
Whether it makes driving safer, improves the user experience, or is just plain cool, driver-assistance technology is becoming more prevalent. These systems were once thought to be premium features, but more and more are now standard equipment. To keep up with demand and add value to top-of-the-line trim levels, automakers must innovate.
Volkswagen announced its newest technology, park assist with remote control, via a press release. Additionally, it stated that the 2021 Volkswagen Touareg is the first VW model capable of assisted movement without a driver inside the SUV. Notably, the Touareg is no longer sold in the U.S., but VW still sells the midsize SUV in other countries.
How does this technology work, and when will you be able to use it? Let’s take an in-depth look at what park assist with remote control is all about.
Drivers can control the 2021 Volkswagen Touareg from the palm of their hands
The 2021 VW Touareg isn’t the easiest vehicle to park. That’s why it’s so enticing to be able to use a driver-assistance system to park this midsize SUV remotely.
How does park assist with remote control work? There are a couple of situations in which you can use it. As with a typical park assist system, the driver can begin the process from inside the vehicle. First, they must hit a command on the SUV’s infotainment touchscreen to search for a compatible parking space. The user can then activate the park assist button and follow up by depressing the brake and holding the drive button. The system takes over from there, perfectly parking the vehicle.
The remote feature of this system significantly differs from the traditional version. It requires an app, which the driver must download to their smartphone. The user starts the process the same way – utilizing the infotainment system to find a parking space. Then, they activate the remote control parking system, take their keys, and exit the vehicle. From there, the driver taps and holds the drive button on the smartphone app while the 2021 Volkswagen Touareg automatically steers into the parking space.
Is this innovation worth the hype?
Park assist systems have been around for a while now, so Volkswagen’s remote control version isn’t entirely revolutionary. In fact, several other manufacturers, including Hyundai, have remote smart park features. However, this is a big step forward for Volkswagen as it fights to remain competitive against its rivals.
Volkswagen models like the Atlas continue to earn praise, but competitors like Toyota and Ford continue to outperform in sales. According to GoodCarBadCar.com, the Volkswagen Atlas in the middle of the pack among midsize SUVs with 24,189 units sold in the third quarter of 2020.
Implementing features such as park assist with remote control will help the company earn more brand awareness, even if the feature is only offered on premium trims.
The feature itself is only useful in certain situations. Many drivers like to have control over their vehicle at all times and have trouble trusting automated systems. However, park assist with remote control can be especially useful if someone parks too close to your vehicle. Instead of trying to squeeze back into your car without dinging the one next to it, you could simply use your phone to have your vehicle exit the parking space. This app allows you to start the engine via the smartphone app and direct the system to go forward or in a particular direction.
The final verdict
Unfortunately, shoppers in the U.S. won’t have access to park assist with remote control just yet. So far, the German manufacturer has only confirmed that the 2021 Volkswagen Touareg would have this feature. However, other models will likely receive this technology shortly. It won’t likely come by surprise either, as Volkswagen will likely promote the feature in a slew of advertising campaigns.