Toyota unveils Lexus ‘driverless car’

Toyota unveils advanced active safety research vehicle

Toyota has revealed an self-driving car equipped with sensors and automated control systems which respond to the vehicle’s surroundings.

Toyota has revealed what they’re calling the Advanced Safety Research Vehicle; an autonomous car equipped with sensors and automated control systems which can observe, process and respond to the vehicle’s surroundings.

Technology, including; GPS, stereo cameras, radar and Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) laser tracking will, hopefully in the future lead to a ‘fully autonomous car’- however Toyota was keen to stress that their vision isn’t necessarily to release a car that can drive itself; instead they “envision technologies that enhance the skills of the drive, believing a more skilful driver is a safer driver.”

The vehicle, which is based on a Lexus LS, has systems capable of scanning movement of objects, identifying a green light from a red light, and measuring the vehicle’s trajectory on the road.

Addressing the audience at the 2013 CES, Lexus Group Vice President and General Manager , said: “It’s probably fair to say that for most people the term autonomous is synonymous with driverless. At Lexus, that's only part of the story. Instead, we believe that in our pursuit of developing more advanced automated technologies the driver must be fully engaged in the operation of the vehicle at all times.”

“Our vision is not necessarily a car that drives itself but rather a car equipped with an intelligent, always-attentiveco-pilot whose skills contribute to safer driving,” he added.

Although these features are being tested at the moment, according to Toyota we can expect them in production cars in the not-so-distant future.