Exploring Automated Driving Technology: A Guide to Autonomous Vehicles

by Kristine on February 22, 2023

Blog #47 Exploring Automated Driving Technology A Guide to Autonomous Vehicles

The History of Autonomous Vehicles

Autonomous vehicles have been a concept for centuries, with the first idea being designed by Leonardo da Vinci in the 1500s. His design was a cart that could move without being pushed or pulled, using springs under high tension for power and steering that was set in advance so the cart could move along a predetermined path

In 1939, General Motors (GM) created the first self-driving car, which was an electric vehicle guided by radio-controlled electromagnetic fields generated with magnetized metal spikes embedded in the roadway. By 1958, GM had made this concept a reality.

In the 2000s, self-parking systems began to emerge either as standard or optional equipment, mostly on luxury cars In 2009, Google began developing self-driving cars and in 2012, the first autonomous car was tested on public roads in the United States

In 2016, the first self-driving car was approved for use in the United States. This was the Tesla Model S, which was equipped with Autopilot, a semi-autonomous driving system.

Today, autonomous vehicles are becoming more and more common and are being used for a variety of purposes, such as transportation, delivery, and even entertainment. Autonomous vehicles are expected to revolutionize the way we travel and will have a major impact on our lives.

What is an Autonomous Vehicle?

An Autonomous Vehicle (AV) is a vehicle that is able to sense its environment and navigate without human input. AVs use a combination of sensors, cameras, radar, and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to perceive their surroundings and travel to different locations. AVs can be classified into six levels based on the level of automation, from Level 0 (no automation) to Level 5 (fully autonomous).

AVs have the potential to revolutionize the way people travel and interact with their environment. They can reduce traffic congestion, improve safety, and provide more efficient and cost-effective transportation options. AVs can also be used for delivery services, public transportation, and even for recreational activities.

AVs are already being tested and deployed in some parts of the world. For example, Waymo, a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc., has been testing its self-driving cars in the US since 2009. In addition, the UK government has announced plans to invest £250 million in the development of AVs.

AVs are still in the early stages of development and there are many challenges that need to be addressed before they can become widely available. These include safety, security, and legal issues. However, with continued research and development, AVs could become a reality in the near future.

How Does an Autonomous Vehicle Work?

Autonomous vehicles use a combination of sensors and cameras to sense the environment around them, as well as advanced computer technology to process the information they collect. This allows them to make decisions about how best to maneuver in traffic, whether it's following other vehicles or changing lanes on the highway.

The sensors that autonomous cars use can be broken down into two main groups:

  1. Radar - A kind of sensor that uses radio waves instead of light waves like traditional cameras do. These waves bounce off objects in front of them and return information about their distance and velocity back to the car. Radar is good at detecting objects that are moving quickly or far away from you, but it doesn't work as well on objects that are close by or moving slowly (like pedestrians).
  2. LIDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) - A sensor that uses light from a laser or LEDs instead of radio waves like radar does. It bounces off objects in front of it and returns information about their distance and velocity back to the car. LIDAR is good at detecting both slow-moving and fast-moving objects because its lasers can create enough energy for long distances but not too much energy for close ones.

5 Levels of Automated Driving Technology

The 5 Levels of Automated Driving Technology have revolutionized the automotive industry and are paving the way for new business models. From Level 0, “No Automation”, to Level 5, “Full Automation”, the advancements in autonomous driving have been remarkable. Here is a brief overview of the 5 Levels of Automated Driving Technology and examples of each.

Level 0, “No Automation”, is when the driver controls the car without any support from a driver assistance system. This is the most basic level of automation, and is the most common level of automation currently in use.

Level 1, “Driver Assistance”, is when the vehicle has driver assists that control any aspect of acceleration, deceleration, and braking. Examples of this level include adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assist.

Level 2, “Partial Automation”, is when the vehicle has at least two simultaneous automated functions, such as acceleration and steering. Examples of this level include Tesla’s Autopilot and Cadillac’s Super Cruise. 

Level 3, “Highly Automated Driving”, is when the vehicle is capable of driving itself in certain conditions, but the driver must be ready to take control at any time. Examples of this level include Audi’s Traffic Jam Assist and Volvo’s Pilot Assist.

Level 4, “Fully Automated Driving”, is when the vehicle is capable of driving itself in all conditions, but the driver must be ready to take control in certain situations. Examples of this level include Waymo’s self-driving cars and Aptiv’s autonomous vehicles. 

Level 5, “Full Automation”, is when the vehicle is capable of navigating any environment it encounters and requires full 360-degree sensing across multiple sensor types. Examples of this level include Aptiv’s Smart Vehicle Architecture™ and BMW’s autonomous driving technology. 

Are We Ready for an Autonomous Vehicle Future?

The rise of autonomous vehicles has been one of the most exciting technological developments of the past decade. Autonomous vehicles have the potential to revolutionize the way we travel, providing unprecedented levels of convenience and safety. But are we ready for an autonomous vehicle future?

The answer is a resounding yes. Autonomous vehicles are already being tested on public roads in some parts of the world, and technology is advancing rapidly. According to McKinsey, the sector is already seeing high investments, and this is prompting major shifts in the technology stack and customer experience within the vehicle.

Experts predict that we are still decades away from fully autonomous cars, but technology is advancing quickly. Currently, the highest level of autonomy is Level 3, which allows the car to handle most aspects of driving and the driver to temporarily take their eyes off the road.

The potential of autonomous vehicles is immense. According to a report by the US Department of Transportation, automated vehicles could reduce traffic fatalities by up to 90%, reduce congestion, and provide greater access to transportation for those who are unable to drive. 

However, there are still many questions that need to be answered before we can fully embrace an autonomous vehicle future. For instance, how will autonomous vehicles interact with pedestrians and other vehicles on the road? How will they handle complex situations such as inclement weather or construction zones? What safety protocols will be in place to ensure the safety of passengers?

These are all important questions that need to be addressed before we can fully embrace an autonomous vehicle future. But with the right policies and regulations in place, autonomous vehicles have the potential to revolutionize the way we travel and create a safer, more efficient transportation system.

What are the Benefits of Using Autonomous Cars?

As autonomous vehicles continue to develop and become more mainstream, many people are beginning to ask whether they are worth the investment. The answer is a resounding yes. Autonomous cars provide numerous benefits that can improve safety, convenience, and even the environment.

One of the major benefits of autonomous vehicles is improved safety. Autonomous cars are equipped with an array of sensors and cameras that allow them to detect obstacles and react quickly and accurately to avoid collisions. This can reduce the number of car accidents, improving safety for both drivers and pedestrians.

Autonomous cars also provide a level of convenience that can’t be matched by traditional cars. They can be summoned with the touch of a button and can be programmed to take you to your destination with minimal effort. This means that you can spend more time doing the things you enjoy, rather than stressing about traffic and directions.

Finally, autonomous cars can also have a positive impact on the environment. Autonomous cars are more fuel-efficient than traditional cars, meaning they use less fuel and produce fewer emissions. This could lead to a reduction in air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, leading to a healthier environment for everyone.

Autonomous cars are already changing the way we drive, and the benefits they provide are only going to increase as technology continues to evolve. If you’re considering investing in an autonomous car, the advantages they provide make them a great choice.

What are the Downfalls of Using Autonomous Cars?

The use of autonomous vehicles is becoming increasingly popular, and it is no surprise why. Autonomous vehicles offer a number of advantages, such as increased safety, smoother traffic flow, and a greater willingness to commute long distances. However, there are also a number of downsides to using autonomous vehicles that must be considered.

One of the main disadvantages of autonomous vehicles is the potential for data protection issues. Autonomous vehicles are constantly connected to the environment, which can create cyber security issues. Additionally, the correct handling of road networks can be compromised.

Another downside to using autonomous vehicles is the high cost of implementation. Self-driving cars can cost upwards of $100,000, which makes them unaffordable for many people.

The use of autonomous vehicles can also lead to job loss. Many truck and taxi drivers may become unemployed as autonomous vehicles become more popular.

Finally, while autonomous vehicles can reduce the number of fatalities due to car accidents, they may also lead to increased highway speeds and increased demand for delivery services.

In conclusion, while autonomous vehicles offer a number of advantages, there are also a number of downsides that must be considered. Data protection issues, high cost of implementation, job loss, and increased highway speeds are all potential downsides to using autonomous vehicles.

Where Are We Now with Autonomous Vehicles?

Automated driving technology is happening right now, but it's not quite ready for the average consumer. There are still some kinks to work out before we're all zipping around in self-driving cars—and that's okay. Here's what you need to know about where we are with autonomous vehicles:

The first thing you should know is that autonomous vehicles will be regulated by states instead of the federal government. This means that different states may have different regulations regarding how close a human driver has to be behind the wheel of an autonomous car before it can drive itself, for example.

The second thing you should know is that there are currently no federal laws governing how autonomous vehicles must be tested on public roads. There are many companies working on different types of self-driving cars, but they all have different methods for testing them and making sure they're safe enough for widespread use (and none of them are perfect).

Finally, according to Business Insider, there are plenty of things that could go wrong with an autonomous vehicle system—and they don't always happen while you're driving down the road! For example: "The software could fail if someone tries to hack the car's computer, if a piece of equipment stops working or if an object interferes with the sensors."

The future of autonomous vehicles is rapidly approaching

Automated driving technology is the future. It's no longer a matter of if we'll have self-driving cars, but when. We don't know exactly what that future looks like yet, but we do know that it will include autonomous vehicles (AVs) driving alongside us on our roads and highways.

As this technology becomes more widespread and available to the public, it will change our lives in ways we can only begin to imagine. One thing we do know for certain is that it will disrupt the car dealership market—and not just by introducing new types of vehicles for consumers to buy from dealerships.

In fact, AVs may even change how we go out and buy cars in general. Right now, dealerships are still evolving their processes around this new technology as they try to figure out how they should adapt them to fit AVs into their business models. Here are some things you need to know about how your local dealership might be affected by AVs:

1) There will be fewer cars sold overall because AVs reduce traffic congestion and therefore decrease car sales volume; however…

2) The remaining cars will be bought more often because they're easier to maintain than traditional cars and therefore last longer, which means that the dealerships will still have plenty of work to do.

3) Dealerships will become more focused on services like maintenance and repairs than they are now, and dealerships could end up selling more parts for cars than they do now.

4) The industry as a whole might shift away from traditional car sales toward leasing or renting instead.

free trialIn conclusion, the introduction of AVs will change the way people buy and sell cars. The key to success in this industry will be finding ways to adapt to these changes while still making sure that customers are happy with their experience. The implementation of autonomous vehicles is putting dealerships in an excellent position to reap huge benefits. Autonomous vehicles offer a range of advantages, including increased safety, smoother traffic flow, and reduced air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. For car dealerships, the opportunity to work with autonomous vehicles is immense.

Quickride is the perfect partner for car dealerships looking to provide autonomous vehicles. Quickride’s technology allows car dealerships to easily integrate autonomous vehicles into their fleets, and they provide a range of services to help dealerships get the most out of their autonomous vehicles. Using a semi- or fully autonomous vehicle as your shuttle allows dealerships to slowly and methodically introduce their customer base to this new technology.

Take advantage of Quickride’s 30-day free trial to see how autonomous vehicle technology can benefit your dealership. Sign up today and discover the possibilities.

Topics: autonomous vehicles, autonomous cars, self-driving cars, automated driving technology