News about Volvo: “Drive Me”
Video 1: Volvo self-driving cars
Video 2: 2014 Volvo Drive Me – Autonomous Driving Project – Highlights
These videos above are all about “Drive Me – Self-driving cars for sustainable mobility”.
In December 2013, Volvo Cars reported a project about Autonomous Driving named “Drive Me”. This time Volvo will play a leading role in the world’s first large-scale autonomous driving pilot project, in which 100 self-driving Volvo cars will use public roads in everyday driving conditions around Gothenburg, the Swedish city.
“Autonomous vehicles are an integrated part of Volvo Cars’ as well as the Swedish government’s vision of zero traffic fatalities. This public pilot represents an important step towards this goal. It will give us an insight into the technological challenges at the same time as we get valuable feedback from real customers driving on public roads,” said Håkan Samuelsson, President and CEO of Volvo Car Group. “Pioneering technologies involving extensive use of driver support systems will not only help us realise our safety vision but also bring strong societal and consumer benefits.” (Media.volvocars.com, 2013)
Despite tremendous attempts and improvements in traffic safety, there are still 1.2 million people killed in traffic every year. In 2007, Volvo was stimulated by this, as the only automotive manufacturer in the world, to launch a safety vision stating that no one should be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo car by 2020, in which case the cars should not crash.
The project “Drive Me” will involve self-driving cars using approximately 50 kilometres of selected roads in and around Gothenburg. These roads are typical arteries, including motorway conditions and frequent queues. The “Drive Me” project will focus on a number of areas, such as (Media.volvocars.com, 2013):
- How autonomous vehicles bring societal and economic benefits by improving traffic efficiency, the traffic environment and road safety
- Infrastructure requirements for autonomous driving
- Typical traffic situations suitable for autonomous vehicles
- Customers’ confidence in autonomous vehicles
- How surrounding drivers interact smoothly with a self-driving car
Benefits from “Drive Me”
As seen from this project, autonomous driving will bring significant benefits to both Volvo Cars and the customers.
For the customers, it will fundamentally change the way, in which we drive cars and look at driving cars. For the future driver, it will be extremely convenient to plan the driving activity with a combination of autonomous and manual driving, which makes the daily journey more efficient. Autonomous driving is the best solution for high-efficient time-management both for the drivers and the traffic system. With it, the future driver will be able to enjoy a simple and relax driving journey in talking through phones or seeing a movie, while the car drives for you automatically.
For Volvo Cars, it is a fantastic chance to join in a competition with other huge car makers in the market. Since with the rapid and huge development of modern technology used in cars, Volvo realizes that the statement with safety is not unique any more to support its brand image and keep the identity of this brand. In the experiment and project about autonomous driving, Volvo owns a ticket to get itself into the first-rate car manufacturers because of the self-driving car, one of the most hopeful future directions. In addition, Volvo also has the advantages on the aspect of reinforcing the autonomous driving as a vital part of Volvo’s brand image “safety”.
Media.volvocars.com. 2013. Autonomous Driving according to Volvo Car Group: benefits for society and consumers alike. [online] Available at: https://www.media.volvocars.com/global/en-gb/media/pressreleases/136181/autonomous-driving-according-to-volvo-car-group-benefits-for-society-and-consumers-alike [Accessed: 8 Jan 2014].
Media.volvocars.com. 2013. Volvo Car Group initiates world unique Swedish pilot project with self-driving cars on public roads. [online] Available at: https://www.media.volvocars.com/global/en-gb/media/pressreleases/136182/volvo-car-group-initiates-world-unique-swedish-pilot-project-with-self-driving-cars-on-public-roads [Accessed: 8 Jan 2014].
Lavrinc, D. 2013. Volvo Is About to Unleash 100 Robo-Cars in Sweden | Autopia | Wired.com. [online] Available at: http://www.wired.com/autopia/2013/12/volvo-drive-me/ [Accessed: 8 Jan 2014].
Knapman, C. 2013. Large-scale trial of driverless cars to begin on public roads – Telegraph. [online] Available at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/motoring/news/10484839/Large-scale-trial-of-driverless-cars-to-begin-on-public-roads.html [Accessed: 8 Jan 2014].