Teenagers can’t wait for their 16th birthday. They can finally apply for their driver’s license and feel the freedom of getting behind the wheel in their own car. No more being shuttled around by a parent. So, what is all this talk about future cars being autonomously driven by computers? Luckily, one brand isn’t caving to industry peer-pressure, which is why Toyota aims to assist, not replace, drivers in the future.
Toy Car Care certainly has an interest in this new technology, as well as a ton of questions regarding safety and how it will affect the cars we take care of here at the shop. Whatever the future may hold, you can bet that our team will be there for you along the way, servicing and maintaining these future vehicles.
Toyota has always been about safety, so an entirely self-sufficient vehicle without the need of a driver at any time, is probably not going to happen very soon. Right now, self-driving taxis are being tested by Uber, Google, and Delphi Automotive in Singapore. These are in the early stages, so it will be interesting to see how the results influence the different brands’ moves to expand autonomous vehicle technology to more markets and eventually consumer-purchased vehicles.
People must understand that this can only be done in controlled situations and specific areas and may not be feasible or convenient for all drivers.
With this in mind, Toyota aims to assist, not replace, drivers. We see it as a smarter, more conservative approach. Currently, they have technology set to debut in 2020 that will allow the vehicle to accelerate, brake, and steer on long stretches of highway. While Toyota also has plans for a system that assists in urban environments, there’s no launch date.
The biggest issue that Toyota is currently addressing is how to hand control of the vehicle back over to the human behind the wheel. Lighted warnings? Vibrating seats? Alarms? Various methods have been tested, and they are still working the bugs out to ensure excellent communication between the driver and the vehicle system.
Unlike Toyota, Google has eliminated the steering wheel, brake pedals, and accelerator, so if a problem occurs, the vehicle pulls over to the side of the road. To us, that sounds like it could be dangerous if you are on a steep mountain cliff with a convoy of semis behind you. And Delphi will incorporate a trained driver to make sure no malfunctions occur, and then try to eliminate the security driver by 2019.
So, there you have it, a lot of exciting and interesting autonomous vehicle technology coming our way in the not so distant future.
However, Toyota still caters to drivers who appreciate the thrill and freedom of the driving experience. That’s why Toyota aims to assist, not replace, drivers. And Toy Car Care aims to keep your vehicles in tip top shape with superior repair work at honest prices. Stay tuned for more updates about the future of Toyota vehicles!