The Renault-Nissan Alliance has announced that it will launch more than 10 vehicles with autonomous drive technology in the next four years. It said it will launch a range of vehicles with autonomous capabilities in the US, Europe, Japan and China through 2020.
It said the technology will be installed on mainstream, mass-market cars at affordable prices. In addition, it said, it will launch a suite of new connectivity applications that will make it easier for people to stay connected to work, entertainment and social networks.
“Renault-Nissan Alliance is deeply committed to the twin goals of zero emissions and zero fatalities,” said Renault-Nissan Alliance chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn. Driver error is estimated to be responsible for around 90 per cent of all car crash fatalities. The Alliance has sold almost 300,000 all-electric vehicles since the first Nissan LEAF was sold in the San Francisco Bay Area in December 2010.
This year will mark the debut of vehicles with ‘single-lane control’, a feature that allows cars to drive autonomously on highways, including in heavy, stop-and-go traffic. Renault-Nissan said that it will launch vehicles with ‘multiple-lane control’ in 2018. These vehicles will be able to autonomously negotiate hazards and change lanes during highway driving. 2020 will see the launch of ‘intersection autonomy’ – vehicles that can navigate city intersections and heavy urban traffic without driver intervention.
Later this year the Alliance will launch a new mobile app that will allow remote interaction with the user’s car. Next year, it will launch the first Alliance Multimedia System, providing new multimedia and navigation features, as well as improved smartphone integration and wireless map updates. Drivers will be able to choose whether or not to use
the autonomous drive technology.
The Renault-Nissan Alliance is a strategic partnership between Renault and Nissan, which together sell one in 10 cars worldwide. The companies, which have been strategic partners since 1999, sold 8.5m vehicles in nearly 200 countries in 2014. The companies’ engineering organizations were merged in 2014.