Bosch stripped a Tesla Model S electric vehicle, brought in fifteen sensors, and a lidar to create the first Model S P85 electric self-driving vehicle. We drove it last week in Boxberg, Germany. We got to see the future, and the future is not that far away.
There is an assumption that initially, most autonomous vehicles will be electric.
An electric self-driving vehicle would solve a lot of this country’s problem. The electric car inherently lowers fuel consumption. An autonomous vehicle takes away the human operator error that causes so many of the accidents and fatalities of today. Bringing electric cars and self-driving cars together, along with car-to-car connectivity and car-to-infrastructure is the long-term goal.
Which will come first, robotics or autonomous vehicles?
Autonomous vehicles play such a pivotal role in the simplification of societal needs that self-driving cars are being pushed forward. Imagine buying a car, not to drive it, but so that your sedan can do errands for you.
The Mercedes-Benz F 015 concept had seats that turned out of the car towards you so that you didn’t have to bend into the vehicle, only sit in the seat, and it would swivel into driving position.
The question is, will they create robots just to drive an autonomous vehicle to satisfy legislation that a car can’t be in motion without a driver to take over in the car?
All car companies are saying that by 2020 cars will be autonomous. Dr. Dan Withopf, Bosch engineer of Chassis Systems control, talked about the one technology that will be the challenge of an autonomous vehicle by 2020. While driving the Tesla Model S P85 electric self-driving vehicle he said, safety and redundancy will be the biggest challenge. The autonomous car has to work 100% of the time, even if a sensor fails or drops out, like if there were an electric failure or something.”