Car remotely controlled from smartphone

Car remotely controlled from smartphone

It sounds just like something straight out of a James Bond film - but motorists really could soon be able to turn their vehicle into a remote-controlled car.

Fans of 007 will recall actor Pierce Brosnan using a mobile phone to control a BMW 750 from the rear seat and take it on a high-speed chase through Hamburg, in Tomorrow Never Dies.

Now Jaguar Land Rover has helped the fiction become reality by developing a new system that allows a Range Rover's steering, brakes, gears and accelerator to be operated from a smartphone app.

But with the system - which currently has a range of around 30 feet - only allows the vehicle to reach a maximum of 4mph. So perhaps the speeds and stunts seen in the 1997 movie would be out of the question.

Instead, the manufacturer says, the system could come into its own when a motorist needs to get their vehicle out of a tight space, such as in a car park when another vehicle has parked too close and the driver's door can't be opened.

Dr Wolfgang Epple, the director of research and technology at Coventry-based Jaguar Land Rover, says the system could help eliminate the stress motorists encounter when attempting difficult parking manoeuvres.

And he adds that autonomous systems and other new technologies could also help make driving safer and prevent accidents.

Copyright Press Association 2015