Mercedes-Benz is clearly putting its resources toward a self-driving future. After showing the bizarre F 015 at CES earlier this year, it’s now pulled the covers off another autonomous concept at the Tokyo Motor Show. Targeted at "Generation Z," the Vision Tokyo is a youthful and funky take on social commuting, a kind of high-tech karaoke booth on wheels with some very out-there features that give an insight into what the company feels personal transport will be like in the next couple of decades.
Unveiled as a showcase of Nissan’s plans for the future of electric vehicles and autonomous driving, the IDS Concept was presented at the Tokyo Motor Show today by Nissan’s president and CEO Carlos Ghosn. Ghosn said that the company is well on track to fulfill its promise of autonomous drive technologies in production vehicles by 2020.
A self-driving vehicle developed by researchers in Germany has undertaken a monster 2,400 km (1,500 mi) journey from the US/Mexico border at Nogales to Mexico City without any guidance from a human hand. While the lengthy road trip took place mostly on highways, the AutoNOMOS car also had to contend with potholes and city streets before safely pulling into Mexico City to complete the longest trip ever completed by an autonomous vehicle in Latin America.
Part mass transit, part personal mobility, the Next Future Transportation system is designed to act as an efficient, coordinated network that shuttles folks from door to door. Still in the early concept stages, the design features a series of modular, self-driving electric pods that pick passengers up on demand and link together in bus-like form on the journey to get each of them from point A to B as efficiently as possible.
Mitsubishi Electric Corporation plans to highlight next-generation automotive technologies at the upcoming Tokyo Motor Show. It will show two related forward-looking concept cars, the Emirai 3 xDas and the Emirai 3 xAuto. The former packs a high-tech, multi-screen cockpit with next-generation human-machine interface, while the latter has a range of automated driving features.
Tesla's semi-autonomousAutopilot upgrades are live. Model S vehicles produced after October of last year are now capable of automatic parallel parking, lane changes with the tap of the turn signal, and traffic-aware cruise control. Version 7.0 of the Model S' firmware will also add new apps and a refresh of the UI that provides the bulk of the driver's interaction with the car's features.
A driverless bus developed by French firm EasyMile is to go into operation at a business park in California and a park in Singapore. The EZ10 is operated entirely autonomously and doesn't even have a steering wheel. Easymile says it hopes to have 100-200 EZ10s in operation by 2017.
Each year, Swiss automotive think tank Rinspeed reveals an all-new forward-looking concept car at the annual Geneva Motor Show. Last year it showed a robotic autonomous concept called Budii, and in past years, it's revealed a six-wheeled range-extending electric minicar, a truly go-anywhere amphibious hybrid and a shape-shifting electric 1+2. In 2016, Rinspeed will switch venues and reveal a drone-docking autonomous car at the Consumer Electronics Show. The car is called Ʃtos, and like all those previous Rinspeed designs, it's as interesting and thought-provoking as it is weird and overdesigned.
A long-awaited software update from Tesla is due to be rolled out this week, adding elements of autonomy to its all-electric vehicles. CEO Elon Musk has revealed that Tesla Version 7 software with Autopilot is set for a worldwide release this Thursday, featuring other upgrades and a fresh new look for its user interface.
Subaru has already trotted three Viziv (Vision for Innovation) designs out over the past two years – the original 2013 Viziv concept, the Viziv 2 and the Viziv GT video game race car. Now it's reusing that semi-portmanteau once again for the Viziv Future concept. All the Viziv concepts have been forward-looking, but none more so than the Future. The new concept car is infused with next-generation technologies and design solutions inside and out.