Cleveland, Ohio – The rush to get fully autonomous vehicles on the road has aggressive tech companies such as Tesla and Google’s Waymo promising self-driving cars within the next year or two; industry stalwarts such as Ford, BMW, and Nissan targeting 2021; and those taking a more cautious approach.
Honda executives have set 2025 as the target for SAE Level 4 autonomous cars – vehicles that can drive themselves and monitor road conditions in specific conditions and environments. SAE Level 5, fully autonomous cars, can perform all driving and road-monitoring tasks in all driving conditions.
Honda Motor Co., Ltd. President & CEO Takahiro Hachigo said, “We are striving to provide our customers with a sense of confidence and trust by offering automated driving that will keep vehicles away from any dangerous situation and that will not make people around the vehicle feel unsafe."
Honda officials set 2020 as the target for SAE Level 3 autonomy – automated systems that can conduct driving tasks and monitor the driving environment, but the human driver must be ready the retake control when the automated system requests. Telsa’s autopilot system is a Level 3 as are some competitive offerings.
A Honda test vehicle has demonstrated automated driving on a multi-lane freeway in the presence of traffic. The test vehicle utilizes an advanced sensor package which includes multiple cameras, as well as five light detection and ranging (LiDAR), and five radar sensors.
About the author: Robert Schoenberger is the editor of Today's Motor Vehicles and a contributor to Today's Medical Developments and Aerospace Manufacturing and Design. He has written about the automotive industry for more than 17 years at The Plain Dealer in Cleveland, Ohio; The Courier-Journal in Louisville, Kentucky; and The Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Mississippi.