If you’re reading an auto blog, then you must love to drive! I surely do. That’s why I can say I’m happy up to a point to find out that Jaguar and Land Rover are road testing the autonomous vehicle technologies.
Why I’m happy? Well, this technology is able to do some beneficial things: first, it’s ability to communicate between vehicles and between vehicle and infrastructure is capable to reduce accidents frequency. It can send traffic informations and warnings to each car, instead of displaying them on the flashing overhead gantry. If we consider the fact that each gantry costs £1m, including the installation, we have a winner technology image. Then, it is able to improve the traffic flow, by sending informations from each car to the traffic authorities. This way, they can correctly manage the cars flow by deflecting or restricting the traffic.
Even more, to ensure a continuous movement, the cars could collaborate to change lanes and pass through junctions in total safety. All these features are possible thanks to Cooperative Adaptive Cruise Control (CACC), which also allow each car to follow the one in front at close distance (platooning). Finally, the system could instantly communicate the approach of any emergency vehicle through car-to-car communication. This way, drivers would be warned in time to free the lane. The tests will take places on a 41 mile UK road.
Why I’m happy only up to a point? Because, in my opinion, this kind of technology can be developed even more, to the point of spoiling the driving fun. When a car is able to take decisions in edgy situations, it’s great. When it warns the driver early about the possible dangers, it’s exceptional! But what if it can drive itself (and it will soon be able to)? Then the future doesn’t look exciting anymore. In the following film, you can see some autonomous technology features installed on Range Rover SUVs.