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The testing will take place in Sweden

Volvo Car Group announced that it will test 100 self-driving vehicles on public roads in Sweden.

The automaker said that it wants to launch a pilot for self-driving vehicles called the "Drive Me" project. The idea behind the project is to achieve zero fatalities involving Volvo vehicles by 2020.

The Drive Me project will consist of 100 self-driving cars and 100 customers selected to run the vehicles during testing. The cars will be placed on certain roads that span about 50 kilometres in Gothenburg, Sweden.

But don't expect to see these cars on the roads anytime soon. Research and development starts in 2014, but actual testing won't begin until 2017.

It's not clear which vehicles will be used for the testing yet, but they will be based on Volvo's upcoming Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) platforms.

The technology is expected to assume all normal driving functions, such as adaptive cruise control (for following the flow of traffic) and road edge detection with steer assist (for steering the car away from road edges). However, a driver does have to be present in the vehicle to take over in case of an emergency. 

On top of that, the technology will offer fully automated parking that doesn't require a driver to be in the car. 

“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,” said Håkan Samuelsson, President and CEO of Volvo Car Group. “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.”

Volvo isn't the only automaker with self-driving vehicle goals for the year 2020. Nissan announced that it will offer autonomous vehicles that are broadly available and have affordable prices by the end of the decade. 

Source: Volvo

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Try some MN Winter driving
By venym76 on 12/4/2013 12:24:30 PM , Rating: 2
I would like to see how these things would handle inclement weather. I just spent 2 hours driving my normal 25minute commute into work this morning due to snow and the idiots running the state refusing to use salt on the roads. I want to see one of these vehicles handle the icy road conditions I had to deal with this morning and then I'll consider putting my life in the hands of a robot.

RE: Try some MN Winter driving
By Captain Awesome on 12/4/2013 12:58:43 PM , Rating: 2
How awesome would it be if these cars automatically sent phone calls and emails to your elected representatives to complain about the poor salt usage.

And what would the car's strategy be for getting un-stuck from deep snow?

RE: Try some MN Winter driving
By venym76 on 12/4/2013 2:51:30 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe have a sand repository next to the driving tire wheel wells that can drop sand down around the tire for more traction.

RE: Try some MN Winter driving
By kattanna on 12/5/2013 12:02:58 PM , Rating: 2
I want to see one of these vehicles handle the icy road conditions

actually, a computer could be making 1000's of corrections a second to much better handle slippage due to ice on the road, and if it was coupled with some sort of radar, it could "see" better through the snow as well.

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