Newswise — In car commercials every road is clear and curvy; every vista is framed by mountains and the sea. But in real life, driving is often a pain because you must glue your eyes to the surrounding traffic. Public transportation has its own drawbacks becauses buses and trains don't start at your home and end at your destination. To get the best of both worlds, a European project headed by Volvo is teaching cars to work together in a platoon, behind a lead car entrusted to a professional driver. The other cars--equipped with sensors and automatic systems that mostly don't go beyond those in existing "active safety" systems--follow behind automatically. That way, their occupants retain control at the beginning and end of their journeys while allowing someone else to handle the middle. Just as is the case for cyclists in a peloton, the cars encounter less wind resistance and so economize on fuel.