Scientists create mathematical formula to help motorists park perfectly
The equation is the result of a collaboration between Vauxhall Motors and maths professor Simon Blackburn...
The equation is the result of a collaboration between Vauxhall Motors and maths professor Simon Blackburn.
Prof Blackburn, from the University of London's Royal Holloway College, came up with the formula to make even the trickiest reverse parallel parking situations a breeze.
However, to the average motorist, its array of square roots, brackets and symbols is likely to lead to more confusion than the driving task at hand.
The formula was released after a Vauxhall survey showed 57 per cent lacked confidence in their parking ability and 32 per cent would rather drive further from their destination or to a more expensive car park, purely to avoid manoeuvring into a small space.
The least confident parkers were those from Norwich, while the most confident were the Welsh. Professor Blackburn said: "Parking the car is something that most of us do on a daily basis – and we all get a little frustrated with it sometimes.
"This was the perfect opportunity to show how we can apply mathematics to understanding something that we all share. "The formula and our advice can help people understand what good parallel parking involves.
"If you understand the angles and the dimensions of your own car then you can work out how to park in a nice, confident way. "Everyone has had the experience of ignoring a space because you're not sure if you can fit in or not. This formula solves that problem."
The formula begins by using the radius of a car's turning circle and the distance between the vehicle's front and back wheels. Then, using the length of the car's nose and the width of an adjacent car the formula can tell exactly how big a space needs to be for your car to fit.
By applying this to basic parking guidelines, you can work out exactly when to turn the steering wheel to slide in perfectly. Spaces will be at a premium this year as 35 million shoppers flock to towns and cities to snap up last minute bargains.
However, the survey found that 15 per cent of Britons claim parking their car to go shopping is the biggest challenge they face at Christmas. Simon Ewart, from Vauxhall Motors, said: "There's no escaping the fact that parking can be challenging for the best of drivers."
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