Chrysler is going to show off a smart car concept at this year’s CES that incorporates cutting-edge features like automated self-driving and biometric personalization. It’s called the Chrysler Portal, and while it sports a sleek, glass-heavy design, it’s also basically a minivan in its shape and layout.
The Portal has a lot of bells and whistles, such as docking stations for tablets and vehicle-to-vehicle communication capabilities. But it offers more substantial, and perhaps even revolutionary, smart car elements as well, including an autonomous driving capability designated at SAE Level 3 (on a five-point scale from the Society of Automotive Engineers), and an electric battery that can carry the car for 250 miles on a single charge.
It also comes equipped with facial and voice recognition that can be used to identify different passengers. Chrysler is billing this primarily as a feature aimed at personalizing different settings – presumably things like seat position and the like – but it also clearly has security implications, such as being used to prevent unauthorized drivers from commandeering the vehicle.
It’s part of what could be a growing trend, with other automotive companies like Jaguar Land Rover and GM also looking to get into vehicular biometrics. And if Chrysler’s Portal generates a lot of buzz when it debuts at CES later this week, it could be the gateway to biometric tech as a standard feature of the smart car of the future.