Modern vehicle advances timeline and diagnostics

The Australian passenger vehicle fleet continues to modernise as OEMs produce vehicles with technology, data and the driver in mind. Examples in the last few decades include reversing sensors/cameras and GPS navigation. The timeline below gives an outline of key milestones.

Timeline of Key Automotive Features and Improvements

–1886. First car is invented

–1908. Ford Model T produced

–1934. Coil spring suspension is popularised

–1930. Cars are made with radios

–1951. Power steering

–1953. Air conditioning

–1959. Seat belts are introduced

–1971. Anti-lock brakes (ABS)

–1988. Airbags

–2000. GPS navigation

–2002. Reversing cameras

–2014. Tesla Autopilot

–2020. Tesla Model 3 reaches scaled production

–2023. Tesla Model Y becomes the most popular vehicle model in the World

–Future. Autonomous, self-driving cars and robotaxis. Preventative maintenance determined by in vehicle diagnostics


In-vehicle diagnostics are now advanced enough to help with a range of functions, from lane sensing for other traffic, adjustable cruise control, obstacle collision warnings and telling the driver when a part requires preventative maintenance or replacement. This could range from Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) to ensure safety and minimal wear of your 4 corner rubber lifesavers or a report that the engine is not performing at optimal capacity due to a fuel injection or cylinder problem. You can even gain an early indication that your brake pads, rotors/discs require replacement for safety, control and stopping power.

Scan tools are available through OEM service departments and independent workshops to confirm any issues in the vehicle’s performance, including key hardware and software components to give an efficient and accurate drive.

Autonomous driving will become more and more advanced, safe and reliable with AI powered data and software development. Insurance implications abound to reduce premiums for good drivers, determining fault from accidents and more.

Vehicle diagnostics will alert the driver, giving specific and measurable notifications and suggested maintenance solutions within smaller tolerances for brake pad thickness, lane sensing calibration, tyre tread projections and more. These preventative maintenance works are more likely to be connected via the internet to a booking option at the OEMs chosen repair network or dealership service centre.

The tech enabled future of Australian motoring will allow us to use data for our safety and driving comfort, with accurate timings on the required preventative maintenance required for each vehicle.

Future blogs will cover telematics and preventative maintenance.