Volvo Bring Us One Step Closer To Automated Driving
Compute The Commute.
Autonomous driving is the future. Imagine a world in which every single car is driven not by a human, but by a complex and flawless set of computer algorithms. Thousands upon thousands of calculations a second would see the end of not just traffic jams, but also road-related casualties. And, best of all, there’d be no more Top Gear. Ever!
Well, Volvo have just brought us one step closer to that utopian future with their new traffic jam assistance system.
The Volvo Traffic Jam Assistance System
The new Volvo Car Corporation technology, once activated, sees to it that your car automatically follows the vehicle in front. Specifically designed for slow-moving queues up to 50km/h, it will be ready for deployment in 2014 and will help to take the edge off those tedious and stressful commutes. No longer will you have to scowl your way through a traffic jam on the way to work. Instead, you can just pop the system on, lie back and relax.
Says Volvo Car Corporation’s Peter Mertens: “This technology makes driving more relaxed in the kind of monotonous queuing that is a less attractive part of daily driving in urban areas. It offers you a safe, effortless drive in slow traffic.
“The car follows the vehicle in front in the same lane. However, it is always the driver who is in charge. He or she can take back control of the car at any time.”
How Does It Work?
The Volvo Traffic Jam Assistance System is an evolution of the existing Adaptive Cruise Control and Lane Keeping Aid technology that was introduced in the all-new Volvo V40 hatchback earlier this year.
At the push of a button, the driver activates the traffic jam assistance function. Once activated, the car’s engine, brakes and steering respond automatically. Safe and comfortable driving is realised by the Adaptive Cruise Control which automatically maintains a set gap to the vehicle in front. At the same time, the steering is also controlled.
Though tests carried out by Volvo in 2011 indicate a positive reaction to this technology, it strikes me as the sort of thing to which people might take a while to adjust.
But how does it sound to you?