Oct. 1 - For the next two weeks, car enthusiasts in Paris have the opportunity to see the future of automotive technology at the the Paris Motor Show. Among the highlights this year are a car with a built in movie projector and another which utilises hologram technology as a safety feature. Jim Drury has more.
If your idea of a good night out is a drive-in movie, you might be attracted by the new Smart Forstars car, one of the highlights of this year's Paris Motor Show. The Forstars has a novel feature - a film projector on the bonnet that can show movies when parked in front of a flat wall. The projector is operated via Bluetooth from an iPhone. Marc Langenbrink, general director of Mercedes-Benz - Smart's parent company - says designers wanted to develop a car that was fun. SOUNDBITE (English) GENERAL DIRECTOR FOR MERCEDES-BENZ FRANCE, MARC LANGENBRINCK, SAYING: "We just wanted to produce something or show something which is maybe a bit crazy, that is integrating a video projector with a cinema surround sound within the car, so more representative for the Smart culture which is friendship, conviviality, sharing things. So you can drive around and when you want to see a movie or you pictures or just listen to some great music, you park your car, you project what ever you want to project to a wall and you have a home cinema." Also on display in Paris is Citroen's prototype 'Numero 9'. It contains a projector hidden in the car's rear window which sends a holographic warning message to any vehicle behind when it gets too close. Citroen designer Carlo Bonzanigo.... SOUNDBITE (English) CITROEN STYLE DS CHIEF DESIGNER CARLO BONZANIGO, SAYING: "On the raise of the rear window there there is a projector which projects an image to a certain distance from your vehicle to the attention of the following vehicle and this warning message is telling the driver behind you that he is approaching too much to your car. So it's something very magical, it's fantastic, it's floating in the air, three dimensional with a perspective impression which which will appear forty, fifty, sixty metres behind you." The technology isn't yet about to hit the road but is a case study for future applications. Other electric cars on display included Renault's 'Zoe', part of the French company's 4 billion euro investment in petrol-free motoring. The show runs until October 14.