Int'l Auto Show concept cars take tech to the next level

From Segway-like four wheelers to SUVs with transparent hoods and tablet-mounts for rear passengers, several automakers gave attendees of this week's New York International Auto show a glimpse at what could be the future of your ride.

Cool cars from the International Auto Show

At the International Auto Show in New York, car manufacturers showed off some of the concepts that could make it into cars of the future. From vehicles that can assess a driver's skills to SUVs that park themselves, here are some of the coolest, techiest vehicles on display.

Toyota FT-1

Reminiscent of Toyota's long-defunct Supra sports car, the FT-1 (Future Toyota One) concept car stood out at this year's big show in New York. It's long, sleek lines, flaired fenders, LED-framed headlights, mag wheels, multiple air intakes and scoops give this roadster an Italian sports car feel.

The FT-1 has no heart (the company has yet to supply an engine). Designed at Toyota’s CALTY design studio in Southern California, a virtual engine is available becuase the car is one of the vehicles available on Sony's Gran Turismo 6 video game.

Looks as good from the rear as the front

We sort of wish Toyota would just take this concept and make it real. It's that beautiful.

There are three powerful LEDs in each headlight, as well as a dense array of 35 smaller LED foglights.

The rear of the FT-1 has an extendable spoiler. It's one of the few sports cars, like the Lamborghini, that looks as good going as it does coming.

Toyota FV2

While Toyota is calling it a concept car, the FV2 is more like a four-wheel Segway. The driver stands upright, and that flip-up hood is actually a windshield.

The FV2 has no steering wheel. Instead, like a Segway, it moves as the driver shifts from side to side, backward and forward. The single-seater also has a variety of safety features, including advanced-warning systems for blind spots and traffic at intersections. The driver and the car literally become one mobile entity.

Cameleon body

No. That's not a reflection on the vehicle's skin. The skin of Toyota's FV2 concept car is a form-fitted LED augmented reality display. Not only can it display video, but the vehicle uses voice and image recognition to determine the driver's mood as well as past driving habits to suggest destinations.

The skin's colors can change with the driver's mood. The FV2 also takes into account the driver's skills to assist in controlling the vehicle.

Land Rover Vision Discovery

There's more to this SUV than meets the eye. The Land Rover Discovery Vision concept SUV with "suicide doors" looks unusual from the outside, but what really sets it apart is the inside. It sports a heads-up display across its windshield that depicts a "transparent" hood for the driver. Drivers can literally view the ground beneath the engine compartment in order to see what is immediately in front of, or beneath, the truck.

The "Transparent Hood," as Land Rover calls it, is created through the use of camera images projected onto the full-width heads-up display at the bottom of the windshield.

From SUV to limo

Another cool feature is a seating control on the vehicle's touch screen that reshuffles the interior arrangement. The seven-seater can be transformed to a four seater with limousine-style leg room by folding down the three mid-vehicle seats.

The car also has tablet mounts on the rear of the front seats for individual entertainment, and the central console storage bin has been changed into door-mounted arm rests that also act as removable storage bins.

Jaguar C-X17

The 'X' in the Jaguar's concept "sports crossover" is appropriate as the company is releasing next to nothing about this vehicle. In fact, Jaguar wouldn't even allow people to sit in the truck. Representatives stood close guard over it.

Some published reports from European motor shows speculated that the vehicle could be released as an actual model in 2016. The vehicle at the Auto Show had no engine.

So why did we include it? Well, it has a unique infotainment system that extends the length of the vehicle's internal center span. Rear passengers can swipe icons on a glass center armrest and push them to the front touch screen to be activiated. Why you'd do that, we don't know.

Kia GT4 Stinger

This clean-looking concept car took some heat from online commenters when it first debuted at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show for being a bit plain. But to see it in person is to admire it.

This 315hp, turbocharged, rear-drive Kia was named "Editor's Choice" for a concept debut by Autoblog.

The car has seven LEDs in its vertical headlights and an LED-framed grill. Unique to this car is its instrument cluster -- a transparent screen that rises from behind the steering wheel to display a red-LED speedometer, tachometer and odometer, among other indicators.

Clear hatchback

This car is a running prototype, meaning it has been tested on the race track. It has a 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder engine and a manual, four-speed transmission. The 20-in. wheels conceal 15-in. Brembo racing brakes. This is a serious sports car.

In the cockpit

The Stinger has an unusually clean dash.

Ford Edge

Sure, there's already a Ford Edge on the market, but this concept car by Ford spices things up. The vehicle spotlights obstacle-avoidance features and a “fully assisted parking aid."

The aid uses ultrasonic sensors to enable the SUV to parallel park itself or drive into perpendicular spaces with the push of a button from inside or outside of the vehicle with a remote control. The remote control allows drivers to wait until the vehicle has pulled out of a tight parking spot before entering.

The car also has adaptive cruise control and a Lane-Keeping System, which uses a forward-facing camera that can scan the road surface for lane markings to keep it from drifting and alert the driver by vibrating the wheel.

Tablet mounts

Inside the Ford Edge concept car are mounts for tablets to offer passengers individual entertainment/work options.