Level 5 Autonomous Cars Under The Magnifying Glass

While Elon Musk is adamant that his 1 million level 5 Teslas will hit the streets in a geofenced location from as early as next year, others don’t seem to think that we’ll experience a level 5 autonomous car in our generation – or ever. While the level 5 autonomous car is both an exciting and scary prospect for the future of transport, there’s still a tremendous amount of work that needs to be done before we even get there. Whether it’s developing tech that works on mind control or creating an infrastructure that will support these cars, there’s a lot to consider. 

The Development of V2V And V2I

While cars are starting the scrape the tip of the iceberg when it comes to predictive tech such as collision detection, a strictly autonomous car will need to rely on the tech in other cars and it’s immediate environment. One of the biggest considerations to go fully autonomous is the safety of all the drivers on the road. This means that if there’s a mix of level 0 and level 5 cars on the road, it might just cause safety hassles. Autonomous cars need to have a higher standard of safety in order to be of benefit to commuters, which means that these cars will need to be able to communicate with other cars and with the infrastructure to be effective and secure. Vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) development are critical for the success of a level 5.

AI And ML To Form Part Of Development

The car of the future will have the added advantage of knowing and identifying risks before they even happen. For manufacturers, this means putting cars on the road that will ensure a safer approach to daily commuter issues such as traffic jams, road accidents, and pedestrian errors. For the insurance industry, new cars will require an adaptive approach to cover as the liability in the event of a collision will shift. The integration of ML (machine learning) and AI (artificial intelligence) will limit the human element and perhaps even exclude it entirely such as the case with level autonomy. This means the onus will be on manufacturers to ensure flawless execution of responses. 

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A Data-centric Automotive Industry

Automakers are loathe to relinquish control to tech companies and with a strong race to level 5 autonomy, tech is essential for automakers to remain relevant. Companies such as BMW and Daimler are making the move to keep their tech in-house, and after receiving approval for a collaboration, have started working on their own tech. Most new vehicles that leave the showroom floor are already at level 2 in terms of autonomous tech. For automakers, the move to develop their own tech is largely due to the protection of driver information. By roping in the help of outside tech firms, there is the risk of information contamination. For level 5 autonomous cars, a security breach will be unthinkable.

There are mixed feelings when it comes to autonomous cars and for automakers, constant development and testing is required to remain relevant. Also, for autonomous cars to be successful, they need to be safer than what we have on the roads at the moment.