Nissan has welcomed new measures to support the development of autonomous vehicle technology on the UK’s road network.
Nissan has already confirmed that the refreshed Nissan Qashqai will be the first Nissan car in Europe equipped with piloted drive technology in 2017, marking an important step in the brand’s commitment to make autonomous drive technologies available to the mass market.
The refreshed Qashqai, available in 2017, will be equipped with ‘Piloted Drive 1.0’, stage one autonomous drive technology that enables the car to drive autonomously and safely in a single lane in heavy traffic conditions on highways. The introduction of ‘Piloted Drive 1.0’ in Europe next year is the first step in Nissan’s longer-term commitment to launch a range of vehicles with autonomous drive capabilities by 2020.
In 2018 ‘multiple-lane control’ in Nissan cars will allow them to autonomously negotiate hazards and change lanes while driving. 2020 will see the launch of ‘intersection autonomy,’ which will allow cars to navigate busy city junctions and heavy urban traffic without driver intervention.
Paul Willcox, Chairman of Nissan Europe, said: “Innovation is at the heart of Nissan and it’s at the heart of the UK. From the telephone and the television, to the Internet itself, British pioneers have been at the forefront of global invention since industrialisation began.
“Here, again, we are pushing the boundaries of what is possible, with our manufacturing teams in Sunderland preparing to make our first steps towards a fully autonomous drive vehicle in 2017.
“This is why we welcome the measures announced by the UK Chancellor on Budget day. These plans will support the development and growth of autonomous vehicle technology in the UK.”
Mr Willcox added: “At Nissan we are committed to pursuing a goal of zero emission vehicles and zero fatalities on the road. Autonomous drive technologies will play a major role in achieving this goal and the measures announced by the Chancellor will help the UK to pave the way in bringing these new technologies to market.”