"Talking" cars may soon be a reality according to researchers, thanks to a software developed at the University of Bologna in Italy that allows cars to "communicate" with one another on the road.
Tests suggest the technology would help reduce motorway pile-ups by 40 per cent.
The reduction in accidents came with computer simulations of the safety system detailed in a paper published in the journal Computer Networks.
Road tests of the software would be carried out in August 2011 on the streets and motorways of Los Angeles with carmaker Toyota.
Although telematics, which combines telecommunications and informatics in cars, has been in use for some time, the Italian research adds one more element.
It couples telematics with the notion of the internet of things which gives everyday objects an online presence for communication.