CES 2021

Mitsubishi teams up with Liftmaster, Chamberlain to make your garage door smarter

New myQ technology turns your vehicles infotainment system into a garage door opener.

Photo courtesy of Mitsubishi Motors

The My Mitsubishi Connect platform has a new component that removes the garage door opener from your car's visor, cup holder, or anywhere else you may have it stashed in your car. The new myQ Connected Garage dynamic technology platform was developed by Chamberlain Group. It allows access to garage door functionality from within an infotainment screen.

The technology will debut on the 2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross, which was recently refreshed for the new model year. Users will be able to access myQ via the car's 8-inch infotainment touch screen, located at the center of the dashboard. The technology will also be available to 2018-2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross owners, through the My Mitsubishi Connect app.

2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross with myQ

Mitsubishi Liftmaster garage door technology Eclipse Cross 2022

Photo courtesy of Mitsubishi Motors

"Today, drivers are limited by the ability to only open and close the garage door when they are within line of sight of the door," said James Trainor, Vice President General Manager of Automotive for Chamberlain Group. Chamberlain Group is the parent company of the Chamberlain and LiftMaster garage door opener brands and myQ connected technology.

"We are thrilled to partner with Mitsubishi Motors to help enhance the driver experience when it comes to garage control. myQ Smart Vehicle Access allows Mitsubishi to integrate smart garage control capabilities within the car's in-dash touchscreen, allowing drivers to safely control, secure and monitor their garage door from wherever they are on their journey. With myQ Connected Garage, they can stay connected to home and know that their garage is secure."

According to Bryan Arnett, Director of Digital Product Strategy for Mitsubishi Motors Research and Development Americas, customers have indicated that controlling their garage door through the infotainment system is one of the most highly desired in-dash features.

To get in-dash garage control, go to your My Mitsubishi Connect app and on the "Services" page, select "myQ Connected Garage." Here you will be able to see if you have a myQ smart garage door opener. If you do not have one, you can select "Add a Hub" within the app to purchase a myQ Smart Garage™ Hub, a quick and easy way to add myQ to an existing garage door opener.

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The Sakura is Nissan's newest EV.

Nissan

It's no secret that the Japanese get all manner of quirky, cool cars that we don't see here in the States. Sure, there's the Nissan Skyline and Mitsubishi Delica van, but tiny vehicles like kei cars and "minivehicles" are popular imports for Americans looking to diversify their drives. Pint-sized kei cars are ripe for electrification, and Nissan did just that with its new Sakura EV, which comes almost a year after the automaker announced it was working with Mitsubishi to develop tiny electric models. It's one of dozens of new EVs slated to come from the Mitsubishi-Nissan-Renaul Alliance this decade.

Though tiny, the Sakura offers a decent top speed of 80 mph, and its range of around 112 miles could make it an ideal urban runabout for many. That said, there's little chance the car will come to the United States. Japan's minivehicles and kei cars are far smaller than anything currently on sale here. For example, the Sakura's 133.6-inch length makes it almost 18 inches shorter than a Mitsubishi Mirage hatchback, a car that Americans would consider minuscule.

Nissan SakuraThe Sakura borrows features from the Nissan Leaf, including its battery.Nissan

Nissan borrowed the Sakura's 20-kWh battery from the Leaf and says it can be used to provide power for external devices or even power a home for up to a day. The car comes with three driving modes to change the behavior of things like regenerative braking and throttle response, and Nissan says it took further guidance from the Leaf to give the Sakura the quietest cabin in its class.

The Sakura's upright shape likely helps with headroom, but it certainly doesn't increase cargo space, as Nissan claims just 107 liters (4 cubic feet) of room. That said, the car features small-item storage spaces for gear like a smartphone or wallet. Buyers can opt for black, beige, or blue-grey interior colors, and an upgrade package is available that brings a leather-wrapped steering wheel.

There are a surprising number of features packed into the minute Nissan's cabin. A 7-inch digital gauge cluster comes standard, and a 9-inch infotainment touchscreen with navigation. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are also standard. Nissan says the car's displays are oriented to reduce distraction and keep the driver's eyes on the road, and ProPilot safety systems are standard, including a new parking assist feature. ProPilot is a stepping stone toward Nissan's goal of debuting autonomous driving tech by 2030.

Nissan SakuraThe Sakura isn't destined for the U.S. - yet, anyway. Nissan

The Sakura goes on sale in Japan this summer. It's priced at 1.78 million yen, or around $14,000. The car will be available for purchase online, and Nissan says it will offer video chats and other resources to help buyers with the process. Buyers will be able to opt for a full in-person buying experience, a completely virtual experience, or anything in between.

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The IIHS may increase the speeds it uses to test advanced driver aids.

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) recently announced that it is considering changing the speeds it uses to test vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention systems. The agency currently tests the systems at 12 and 25 mph, but says that the speeds don't accurately represent the types of crashes the safety tech is meant to prevent.

Front crash preventionwww.youtube.com

Automatic emergency braking (AEB) is designed to notify of a possible collision and help respond with automatic application of braking. Just like a human using the brake pedal, it can stop the car, but higher speeds make it difficult to stop in time. The new tests would be conducted at 35 to 45 mph, which is the range where a large number of rear-end crashes occur. As Automotive News noted, an IIHS study showed 43 percent of rear-end crashes occur at speeds of 45 mph or less, so it's important to have a test that shows how well the tech performs at those levels.

A whopping 85 percent of 2022 vehicles earned a "Superior" rating in the current testing regime, so the IIHS will remove it from 2023 testing and Top Safety Pick award evaluations. Their view is that, since the majority of vehicles meet the criteria, it's no longer an accurate way of evaluating performance. In its place, the agency introduced a night test for automatic emergency braking systems that will begin next year.

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