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Autonomous drive plans for major auto alliance
The Renault-Nissan Alliance is aiming for significant progress in autonomous technology with 10 vehicles to be launched in next 4 years.
Taking a bold stance on the development of driverless technology before the end of the decade, the alliance of Renault and Nissan has confirmed that during the next four years, it will release over 10 vehicles onto the mainstream markets of the USA, Europe, Japan and China at affordable prices with autonomous capabilities.
The launch into greater autonomy comes on the back of recent history which has shown that vehicles from the alliance have become significantly safer and more efficient with domestic market fatalities for both Renault and Nissan having fallen dramatically. In Japan, serious crashes involving Nissans have reduced by 61% in 20 years and Renault has seen an 80% reduction in fatal and serious injury accidents in its vehicles in France during the last 15 years.
On its future commitment to safer and more efficient motoring, the Alliance’s CEO, Carlos Ghosn stated, “The Renault-Nissan Alliance is deeply committed to the twin goals of zero emissions and zero fatalities, which is why we are developing autonomous driving and connectivity for mass-market, mainstream vehicles on three continents.”
A key element of achieving this goal is the development of accessible autonomous technology, based on the assumption that it will reduce the levels of driver error, a factor that is responsible for up to 90% of all road deaths.
This year, the Alliance will launch its single-lane control product enabling cars to be driven autonomously on highways and motorways with the multi-lane control feature to be launched in just two years time. With multi-lane control, autonomous vehicles will have the capability of changing lanes and avoiding hazards. After a further two years, by the end of the decade, intersection autonomy will enable cars from the Renault-Nissan alliance to negotiate city streets in heavy urban traffic conditions.
How the Renault-Nissan Alliance works
Since its formation two years ago, the alliance has been able to make the best use of the engineering skills of both companies, with engineers from both Renault and Nissan working together. The result of this joint effort is a “technology tool kit”, elements of which can be used on any brand resulting from the companies within the alliance as appropriate.
This modular, plug-in approach to advanced vehicle technology is the result of a combined research and development budget of close to 5 billion dollars and access to research facilities and engineering centres of expertise globally, including France, Japan, USA and China. The wealth of automotive engineering experience at these centres provides the alliance with a significant advantage in getting new technologies to market with high efficiency.