Jaguar Land Rover Limited announced that it will build a fleet of over 100 research cars over the next four years to test self-driving and connected technology. The company is set to start testing a wide range of technology that aims to make driving less stressful and safer.
The first stage of testing will involve self-driving tech that allows automobiles to communicate with each other and with infrastructures like traffic lights, signs and more. Jaguar Land Rover’s autonomous tech will also feature automatic emergency vehicle detection systems, reports Daily Mail. A notable feature the automaker plans to develop and test is an autonomous tech that can handle any type of terrain — not just solid ground.
The British car maker’s opt-in system is said to use cameras, along with LiDar (Light Detection and Ranging), radar and ultrasonic sensors to monitor a car’s surroundings, up to five meters ahead, at all times. According to Motor Authority, the sensors are advanced enough to find out surface characteristics, down to the breadth of the tire, even in rain and snow. Tony Harper, who heads Jaguar Land Rover’s research and development unit, said that the company does not want to limit future highly automated and completely autonomous techs to tarmac.
The autonomous driving market is worth around $1.29 trillion globally, but needs to overcome legal obstructions such as deciding who would be responsible in the event of a crash. In Britain, driverless vehicle testing will require a human driver to be present and be able to take control should the need arise.
Jaguar Land Rover revealed that it plans to test 100 self-driving vehicles in the United Kingdom, with the first models to hit the streets later this year. Among the technologies the company is testing, is Roadwork Assist that helps to steer through traffic cones. Another feature called Safe Pullaway keeps cars a safe distance at junctions and in queues.
Venture Beat reports that the British automaker will drive the initial models on a new 41-mile test route on urban roads and motorways near its plants and headquarters in Coventry, UK. The company said that it will also begin testing its Connected and Autonomous Vehicle (CAV) technologies, which comprises of autonomous and semi-autonomous tech. Harper said that Jaguar Land Rover’s CAV tech could help cut congestion, improve traffic flow and reduce the potential for accidents.
Automakers are ploughing trillions of dollars into self-driving tech with American car maker Ford already part of a government-backed autonomous testing project in the UK. Nissan plans to build its first mass-market self-driving vehicle at its UK facility in Sunderland. Volvo is also reportedly planning to test autonomous cars in London in 2017.
Jaguar Land Rover plans to test more than 100 autonomous vehicles in Britain by 2020. The maker of Range Rover 4X4s and sportier luxury saloons is working on an autonomous system that can identify various surface conditions, adjust car settings to match and then proceed without any involvement from human drivers. The developments are significant as they could help current self-driving cars, which are restricted by severe weather conditions. For more CDA News, follow our tweets on Twitter and like us on Facebook.
By Anila Maring
Photo Courtesy Jaguar Land Rover