Running boards are typical for vintage car models, most of which were built between 1919 and 1930. These car parts may have functioned as an accessory to improve the aesthetic value of the model, or they were necessary additions to complement the structure of the vehicle.
Nowadays, running boards are making a comeback, though in a very different context. For instance, it has evolved into optional equipment that an owner may or may not integrate in his or her vehicle. Also, the boards of yesteryears have been modernized into Deployable running boards, taking advantage of the numerous advances in science during the last few decades.
Nowadays, deployable running boards are integrated to trucks and SUVs - especially the ones belonging to the luxury lines. And with the increasing awareness of the benefits and convenience one can get from these products, motor service companies now offer installation packages of deployable running boards to any truck or SUV model.
Technology shifted the manner and method by which running boards are made and utilized. During its earlier days, these panels were permanent fixtures of many vehicles, even when it was never used. Thus, the earlier running boards were more of a nuisance than attractive add-ons.
Nowadays, however, deployable running boards are both attractive and extremely useful. They can be easily hidden and put out of sight when not needed. Also, they can be conveniently operated - no control manual or button required - so that they will instantly lower and extend down as passengers alight or get in the car.
So what do running boards look like these days? A wealth of research has been poured to test and develop this technology, with newer features being introduced only after a few years or so. They have been assessed using ergonomic meters of human attributes like age, weight, and height. Also, deployable running boards are made to be able to stand weather changes - you can use them in sweltering temperature or in very frigid ones.
Most ultra modern deployable running boards are already equipped with devices like sensors that make them perform even without human intervention. Gone are the days when these boards were just classified as 'accessories' - now, they are considered must-have contraptions that give added value to a certain vehicle model. Almost every automobile manufacturer that claims to give premium to ergonomics offers deployable running boards either as a basic feature or as a premium add-on.
The most interesting aspect of deployable running boards is in the way by which they operate. They are now automatic, retracting or expanding without any interceding action. Sensors are attached near the car doors - this way, every time the door opens or closes, electric signals can be sent to the motor controlling the deployable running boards.