Cars will be able to talk to each other to avoid accidents, merge onto highways and drive us to a destination we set on the GPS sometime in the near future. This type of technology is actually already on the roads across the world and will be rolling out in Australia over the next few years.
In Japan, the government and companies such as Toyota are rolling out sets of traffic lights that can talk to avoid accidents.
With sensors on the car, as well as a radar at the lights, the cars and infrastructure can talk to tell each other when it’s safe to make a turn or go forward.
This sort of technology is just the start, and when it launches in Australia in several years, cars will be able to talk to each other over machine-to-machine based 5G networks.
Cars will be aware from hundreds of meters away that another car will be approaching an intersection. This communication isn’t limited to intersections either.
If there is say, a traffic jam up ahead, the cars will be able to suggest the driver take an alternate route to avoid it.
But the real advantage will be when cars start driving themselves.
In the future, companies like Toyota wants a world where there are no accidents, and with technology where cars know exactly where other vehicles are.
By eliminating human error, that future is looking more likely every day.
Driverless technology is already available in cars such as the Tesla Model S, able to activate an autopilot mode and steer itself in certain situations.
Toyota is looking to rollout this technology too, showing news.com.au how it works around the highways of Tokyo.
At this stage, the driverless technology is still based mainly on highway driving, but Toyota takes it further than the Model S by adding the ability to follow navigation direction and change lanes.
On our Lexus demo car, there was a destination set on the navigation system.
Lexus is part of Toyota’s luxury car division.
It was up to the driver to get from our initial location and through the traffic to the highway, but once we came up to the exit, the car automatically took over, indicated and joined the highway.
From there, it steered itself, while overtaking cars driving slower than the speed limit and returning back to the left lane once it was done.
Toyota says traditional GPS isn’t accurate enough for this technology, so it has cars rolling out across the world mapping roads with a combination of small sensors, cameras and GPS units to automatically generate detailed 3D maps of the roads.
While similar types of technology are around, Toyota general manager of its future project division, Ken Koibuchi says Toyota’s will be the best.
“There are very many types of technology … Our system is much more accurate compared to others. Other systems that release very quickly are not as safe as our system,” he told news.com.au
The driverless technology will be rolling out over the next couple of years, with more advanced versions introduced by 2020.
Article and image via News.com.au