Print 55 comment(s) - last by Renski.. on Sep 3 at 4:08 PM

The plan is to make them widely available and affordable by that time

Nissan announced that it will offer autonomous vehicles that will have broad availability and an affordable price by 2020.

Nissan's plan is to deliver several vehicle models with its Autonomous Drive technology by the end of this decade, and Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn will push hard to make sure that goal is met. 

“In 2007 I pledged that – by 2010 – Nissan would mass market a zero-emission vehicle,” Ghosn said. “Today, the Nissan LEAF is the best-selling electric vehicle in history. Now I am committing to be ready to introduce a new ground-breaking technology, Autonomous Drive, by 2020, and we are on track to realize it.”

Nissan is hoping for "availability across the model range within two vehicle generations."

Nissan is already working hard toward its goal. The automaker has been working with several colleges such as MIT, UC Berkeley, Carnegie Mellon, Stanford, Oxford, the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Virginia Tech, and almost every major university in Japan to develop the autonomous technology. 

In addition, Nissan is working on an autonomous vehicle testing facility in Japan, which should be completed next year. 

Back in February, Nissan announced its Silicon Valley research center for autonomous vehicles. The new facility is called the Nissan Research Center Silicon Valley (NRC-SV), and it will use partnerships with educational institutions and companies to work on projects for new vehicle technologies.

Nissan's autonomous vehicle technology will be based off of its current Safety Shield tech, which monitors a 360-degree view around a vehicle for risks and offers warnings to the driver. It will even respond to the situation if necessary. 

We may have to wait until 2020 for Nissan's autonomous vehicles, but in the meantime, the automaker is making strides in the electric vehicle industry. For instance, it announced that it will offer a new battery design for the all-electric Leaf in April 2014 if current testing goes well. The new design aims to help the Leaf's battery from depleting under severe weather conditions (mainly heat). 

Nissan has seen a surge in Leaf sales this year, and updating its battery design can only help its cause. In July, it was reported that Nissan is now selling approximately 2,000 Leaf electric vehicles each month (about four times the volume it was selling about a year ago). To meet this new demand, Nissan is slowly ramping up production of the Leaf at its manufacturing facility in Tennessee.

Source: Nissan News

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RE: No thanks
By FITCamaro on 8/28/2013 4:07:24 PM , Rating: 2
It's not bad. Deceleration near a stop can give you a slight jerk at times but nothing different than most automatics. Is kinda cool at times to have it go to an RPM and stay there despite that you're still accelerating. I drive it pretty easy and the car is telling me my average is around 37 mpg right now. It's supposed to be about 2 mpg off though so that's 35 mpg. Still pretty damn good for a midsize in a mix of city and highway driving.

RE: No thanks
By drycrust3 on 8/28/2013 6:54:53 PM , Rating: 2
Deceleration near a stop can give you a slight jerk at times but nothing different than most automatics.

Do you notice something here? The car is starting to take control of your destiny. It is choosing which gear to use, how fast the engine should rev, how much torque the wheels need, etc.
Your next car may well have a built in navigation system, so another step in loosing your independence. The car will decide which way you want to go in places you're not familiar with, and as long as it does an okay job you would probably be oblivious to the fact that it might take you on a certain path to avoid speed cameras or such like. See how subtle loosing your independence is?
Now add to this that you're getting older, insurance premiums are always increasing, congestion charges will probably be introduced in most cities in the world, and the police are becoming more active in looking for road infractions, like driving while intoxicated or driving faster than the speed limit (or at least they are in New Zealand, where I live).
So down the track you will find more and more subtle pressures to encourage you to become more and more dependent on the computers inside your car, like getting hit with speed camera fines when you decide to navigate, and then your insurance premiums get higher because the insurance company has a link to the police computer, etc.

RE: No thanks
By Reclaimer77 on 8/28/2013 7:02:00 PM , Rating: 2
SUCH a jackass...

RE: No thanks
By MichalT on 8/28/2013 7:37:26 PM , Rating: 2
I'd prefer to be automatically chauffeured around so I can focus on things other than the idiots on the road. However, if it excites you to constantly monitor your engine's RPM level, speed, other drivers, speed cameras, etc. please use your brain power for that.

And before I hear any silly comments, I've been driving a stick sports car for more than 20 years. If I have to pay attention to the driving, I'd rather have full control. But I would opt for a Google style auto driving car if that was an option.

RE: No thanks
By Flunk on 8/29/2013 9:31:24 AM , Rating: 2
Be my guest, no one is saying you can't have one. I don't mind if people who don't care about driving have automated cars, assuming that the cars are competent drivers that is. It might even be better than the current situation.

But I'm with them, if anything my next car is going to be less automatic than my current one. Hyundai Genesis R-Spec is looking quite good right now.

RE: No thanks
By cruisin3style on 8/29/2013 2:21:06 PM , Rating: 3
I'm with them, feel free to drive (or ride) in a automated car but I'm driving myself in a stick shift for as long as they make em

RE: No thanks
By Jeffk464 on 8/29/2013 3:17:46 PM , Rating: 2
I'm sure you will also be able to override the automation when you end up on an enjoyable road.

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