New connected car technology described as ‘fitbit for cars’ | Smart Highways Magazine: Industry News

New connected car technology described as ‘fitbit for cars’

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Innovative cleantech engineering company, Lightfoot has described its new performance monitoring device as a ‘ fitbit for cars’. Smart Highways spoke to Lightfoot’s CEO to find out more about the new technology. 

Founder and CEO of Lightfoot the ‘Fibit for cars’, Mark Roberts has generated connected car technology that lets you know how efficiently you’re driving in live time. Its purpose is to save the average driver £150 to £200 per year on fuel and to improve the environment by lowering a vehicle’s harmful emissions by as much as 20%. Lightfoot estimates that, in 2018 alone, its total users saved £3.4bn in fuel costs and 3,666t in emissions by using its technology.

Only recently available as a consumer offering, the performance monitor device sits on your dashboard and is designed to be simple to use. If a driver is overworking their vehicle’s engine and driving inefficiently, then the device’s lights will go from green to red. The driver will also receive audio feedback according to live engine data.

To find out more about the technology, Smart Highways reporter Emma Greedy posed a few questions to Roberts. When asked about the importance of this ‘fitbit’ technology, Roberts responded, ‘everybody knows driving has its costs, whether they’re financial, environmental, or human, but reducing its impact has been unattainable for most people.’

‘Not everyone can afford an electric vehicle and very few of us can give up driving completely. Lightfoot makes it possible for everyone and anyone to reduce the impact of one of the single greatest contributors to our carbon footprint,’ explained Roberts.

Roberts described how Lightfoot’s pro-driver technology, makes it different from traditional black box telematics. ‘There’s no Big Brother tracking, unless customers request it, there’s no punishments or reporting to insurers. Lightfoot exists to reward drivers who care about safety, emissions, and making driving a little less expensive.’

According to the Office for National Statistics, the average UK household spends £21.20 per week on ‘petrol, diesel, and other motor oils’. Therefore, over a year, they’re spending around £1,102.40 on fuel. Lightfoot’s data from tens of thousands of vehicles and drivers has shown that typical fuel savings are around 10% to 20%. ‘There are so many variables at play,’ said Roberts. ‘The vehicle itself, how it’s driven, and the roads it’s driven on. So it isn’t perfect, but it’s a decent guide for the average UK driver driving a new, highly-efficient car.’

‘The numbers shoot up when you bring older cars and higher mileage into the equation,’ added Roberts.

When asked if he thought car manufacturers would be able to incorporate Lightfoot technology into their vehicles, Roberts responded, ‘of course and it’s something that we’re actively working on and are having some really interesting conversations with leading manufacturers.’

‘Nothing is confirmed yet, but we know the industry sees the value of our product not only to reward driving behaviour but also to incentivise other behaviours like which roads to use or when and where to charge your EV for example,’ said Roberts.

 
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