Nissan have announced that they plan to have autonomous cars for sale by 2020 and it won’t be just one model available, they are planning on implementing this technology in a variety of vehicles.
Nissan Executive Vice President Andy Palmer describes the autonomous drive initiative as one of two pillars of Nissan’s technology strategy, which he identifies as zero emissions, zero fatalities. Nissan believes that self-driving cars will eventually be “collision-free cars.”
The Autonomous Drive technology will be an advanced vehicle system grown from Nissan’s evolving Safety Shield, a 360-degree, around-vehicle monitoring system that uses a variety of sensors to monitor the vehicle’s surroundings for hazards, warn the driver and react when necessary.
In its fully autonomous iteration, the Safety Shield system will be able to recognize and react to all types of driving scenarios and hazards. At the Nissan 360 event being held in southern California, Nissan demonstrated three of the system’s latest capabilities – autonomous side distance control, turning while monitoring oncoming traffic, and overtaking while monitoring oncoming traffic – on specially equipped LEAF electric cars.
One of the next steps in Nissan’s development plans is building testing facilities for autonomous technology, which will include real buildings and architecture. Nissan explains that the proving grounds, which it plans to complete by the end of fiscal year 2014, will allow it to more thoroughly test the technology than it would on public roads, the way we’ve seen parties like Google and Audi do.
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