Fleet News

Next Volvo XC90 will achieve autonomous driving

Volvo will equip the next-generation XC90 with an advanced LiDAR sensor, making it capable of “eyes-off” self-driving.

It could be among the first vehicles to go on sale offering Level 4 autonomous driving - meaning the driver does not need to pay attention for at least part of the journey, unlike existing systems such as Tesla’s Autopilot.

The first vehicles are expected to start production in 2022, featuring an advanced sensor from Luminar.

Other car makers have avoided LiDAR due to excessive cost, but Luminar, which received investment from Volvo in 2018, has managed to reduce the cost significantly.

Volvo says the partnership will deliver its first fully self-driving technology for highways and paves the way for future active safety developments.

Models built on the brand’s SPA 2 modular vehicle architecture will be available as ‘hardware-ready’ for autonomous drive from production start in 2022, with the Luminar LiDAR seamlessly integrated into the roof.

These vehicles will be updated with software over the air and if customers decide to opt for it, the Highway Pilot feature that enables fully autonomous highway driving will be activated once it is verified to be safe for individual geographic locations and conditions.

“Autonomous drive has the potential to be one of the most lifesaving technologies in history, if introduced responsibly and safely,” said Henrik Green, chief technology officer at Volvo Cars.

“Providing our future cars with the vision they require to make safe decisions is an important step in that direction.”

In addition to the Highway Pilot feature, Volvo Cars and Luminar are also exploring LiDAR’s role in improving future advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), with the potential for equipping all future SPA2-based cars with a LiDAR sensor as standard.

Luminar’s technology is based on its high performance LiDAR sensors, which emit millions of pulses of laser light to accurately detect where objects are by scanning the environment in 3D, creating a temporary, real-time map without requiring internet connectivity.

LiDAR is key in creating cars that can navigate safely in autonomous mode, providing them with the reliable vision and perception that cameras and radar alone cannot provide. LiDAR is the ideal basis for safe decision-making in complex environments at high speeds.

To enable the Highway Pilot feature, Luminar’s perception technology will be combined with autonomous drive software and the cameras, radars and back-up systems for functions such as steering, braking and battery power installed on forthcoming Volvo cars equipped for self-driving. Put together, this gives Volvo users who want it access to a safe, fully self-driving feature for use on highways.

Your new issue of Fleet News

In the April issue

The impact of the coronavirus on fleets 

One-in-four fleet agree contract extensions; less than 10% of company cars driven for work / p4

The SMR challenges of coronavirus / p8

Commercial Fleet: Many new measures on hold / p56

Fleet spotlight: Auto Windscreens

How Shaun Atton revolutionised fleet practices to save more than £150k and became a Fleet News Award winner / p32

Fleet & Mobility Live

The UK's most influential fleet event is back with a new name / p28

Electric fleet

Salary sacrifice and EVs / p22

Making EVs the number one choice / p24

Read now



Leave a comment for your chance to win £20 of John Lewis vouchers.

Every issue of Fleet News the editor picks his favourite comment from the past two weeks – get involved for your chance to appear in print and win!

Comment as guest


Login  /  Register

Comments

No comments have been made yet.