The UK has announced that it wants to be the world centre for the development of driverless cars. It said it would conduct a review next year to ensure that the legislative and regulatory framework is in place for such vehicles to be incorporated on Britain’s roads. It will also create a £10m prize to fund a town or city to become a testing ground for autonomous vehicles. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-25230483
Milton Keynes is already experimenting with driverless pods.
By mid-2017 it is planned that 100 fully autonomous vehicles will run on the town’s pathways along with pedestrians, using sensors to avoid collisions.
The plans for self-drive cars were announced in the chancellor’s National Infrastructure Plan.
Much of the hype around driverless cars centres around Google. Its self-drive car recently completed 500,000 miles (804,000km) of road tests.
In the US, California, Nevada and Florida have passed legislation to allow driverless cars.
This month Nissan carried out the first public road test of an autonomous vehicle on a Japanese highway.
Car manufacturers suggest that autonomous vehicles will be on the roads within the decade.
Google has given 2017 as the date its cars will hit the roads. Not to be outdone, Elon Musk, head of electric car company Tesla Motors, has said he will have such vehicles ready in 2016.
Other car manufacturers, including Daimler and Nissan have given a 2020 date for their own versions.
Much of the underlying technology for autonomous driving is already installed in cars such as the Mercedes S500 which uses onboard radar and 3D stereoscopic cameras to gauge the distance from other cars.