Though autonomous (self-driving) cars are nothing new, Japanese automaker Toyota announced on December 20 that it’ll unveil its Advanced Active Safety Research Vehicle (AASRV) at the CES 2013. Recently, the company has released a short video of its advanced safety features which is designed to minimize car crashes in a Lexus.
Toyota’s AASRV technology includes Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS), on-board radar and video cameras to monitor the road, the surroundings, and the driver. Through the ITS technology, a series of optical beacons on the roadside can detect the positions of pedestrians and obstacles, and relay information to the AASRV about whether a traffic light is red or green. If red, then it will stop automatically at the traffic signals. Besides, the car will have Toyota’s existing technology which is able to monitor whether the driver is awake or not, to keep the car on the road. That’s not all. The car will be able to communicate with other vehicles. Added to these, Toyota has also developed technology that lets a car communicate with a driver’s smartphone to offer augmented reality features.
This clearly indicates that Advanced Active Safety Research based vehicle is designed to “explore the use of autonomous technologies and high-level driver assistance systems.” In short, the technology is designed to be used in conjunction with a driver, but the car can control itself.
A spokesperson of Toyota said, “We’re looking at a car that would eliminate crashes. Zero-collisions is our ultimate aim.”
The video below is a bit more than 5 seconds, and shows a Lexus LS 600h fitted with Toyota’s Advanced Active Safety Research technology is travelling along a road, with no driver behind the wheel.
This was just a teaser. Toyota has promised that Lexus’s Vice President and General Manager Mark Templin will introduce the technology, research, and other vital information during a press event, going to be held on Monday, Jan 7.