BMW has been busy with the self-driving car challenge. The company has a prototype that it showcased during the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show last week. It plans to test 40 self-driving cars toward the end of 2017. Other car manufacturers that participated in the show included Ford, Mercedes, FCA, and Volkswagen.
BMW has partnered with Intel and Mobileye. Data is being collected, and the present plan is that self-driving cars would be ready for production in 2021. The data collection is being used to hone self-driving car technology that will make vehicles more effective in every area from highway traffic flow to snowy conditions.
The overall long-term vision is for driver-less car technology vehicles to be the only type of car on highways. Since driver-less car technology would be computer controlled and cars would allegedly be able to move in lines much closer than non-driver-less technology cars, it’s expected that driver-less cars would burn less fuel since the speed at which they travel would be more of a constant.
A few of the other benefits expected to come with the increase of autonomous car technology are that they will be able to park themselves several blocks from where the owner is dropped off, and they will allow the elderly and visually impaired to have a renewed sense of independence since they will not have to worry about doing the driving themselves or finding someone who can drive them to where they need to be.
It’s likely that driver-less car technology vehicles will not be easy on the pocket book when one considers that the cost for Google’s driver-less car technology testing was about $150,000 back in 2012. However, progress is being made in this area. Waymo has been able to develop an integrated self-driving car system for $75,000.
Nice effort, but still a long way to go in the area of affordability for the general public.
Featured image via Pixabay.