The IT department at Audi has done a lot of good things in recent years, such as bringing fast 4G LTE network to normal cars like the A3, or making an intuitive digital dashboard for the new TT. Their latest creation though, well, it sounds like an afterthought to be honest.
You see, they had the power of in-car internet at their disposal and wanted to do something useful with it. So they came up with the Audi Online traffic light information system. Basically, it establishes a link between the car and the traffic light network via the central traffic computer in each town or city, and learns their change sequences in the vicinity.
The benefit of this is that the system can tell you, via the Driver Information System (DIS), the speed to select in order to pass through the light during a green phase. If you are already sitting behind a red, it will calculate and count down the time remaining until the next green light. It also displays a visual aid using red, amber or green icons.
Now, this is one of those new systems you can do without. I mean we have been totally fine without it in the past hundred years. We’re not sure the cost and effort of developing it was actually worth the benefits, but there is one service it offers that makes more sense than helping you catch the green lights. Audi Online Traffic Light Information is connected to the car’s Start-Stop function to ensure the engine is switched on five seconds before the green phase.
Audi says the online light information system has the potential to reduce CO2 emissions by up to 15 per cent, and could save approximately 900 million litres of fuel if it were to be deployed throughout Germany.