#TECHNOLOGY: 5 Autonomous Cars Trend in 2019 - WELCOME TO FACTS ZONE NEWSPAPERS

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#TECHNOLOGY: 5 Autonomous Cars Trend in 2019

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Just a few short years ago the idea of cars driving themselves on our streets seemed like a crazy sci-fi fantasy. However, the rapid advances in machine learning and autonomous technology in recent years mean it’s now close to becoming a reality.

Every major automobile manufacturer is heavily investing in self-driving technology, and 2018 saw many pilot schemes taken onto highways and city roads. By the end of 2019, we may not all being chauffeured around town by robots as we sit in the back and catch up with our Facebook friends, but we will certainly be significantly closer than we are today.

Here are my five predictions for how that’s likely to come about:

First Level 5 Autonomous Cars?


Progress towards fully autonomous cars has been split into five stages – from level one, which refers to driver assistance functions common in many new vehicles, to level five – fully self-driving vehicles capable of operating on-or-off-road, with no human interaction required whatsoever.

Level five autonomy doesn’t exist yet, but manufacturers including Honda, Renault, BMW, and Toyota have said they hope to put fully autonomous cars into production by 2020, meaning we could expect to see trials and pilots taking place this year.

Of course, things don’t always go according to plan – Tesla for example, initially said it expected their cars to be fully autonomous by 2017. But with billions of dollars being poured into research and development by some of the world’s most technologically-adept companies, 2019 could be the year we see the first entirely autonomous cars start to appear on our streets.

First fully autonomous coast-to-coast trip?

2015 saw an Audi SQ5 engineered by Delphi make the 3,400-mile trip from San Francisco to New York; however, a human co-pilot took over the controls on several occasions, for safety reasons.

At the end of 2018, a former Google engineer completed a coast-to-coast journey in a level 2 autonomous vehicle apparently without taking control of the vehicle; however, cars at this level of automation still require a human to be available to take control.

And Tesla has delayed their own attempt several times after initially stating that their technology was capable of the feat in 2016, citing safety concerns.

The first manufacturer to complete a totally unassisted trip would certainly win kudos – and with the race to bring these vehicles to our streets heating up, could 2019 finally be the year we see it happen?

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