After stating that it wasn’t interested in autonomous vehicles, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has started to test self-driving vehicles in the UK. If that wasn’t a surprise, Jaguar is planning on investing a large amount of money to make sure its upcoming autonomous cars will drive like human beings, not like robots. How does that even make any sense? An autonomous car, which is technically a robot, driving like a human? We thought that autonomous cars were going to make roads safer by taking humans out of the equation.
Bosch is leading the first phase of the project, which is already underway. Motorists who work for Greenwich in London are driving around a fleet of JLR cars with a host of sensors that record information on how human drivers react to certain circumstances, deal with emergency situations and enter a roundabout. The director of JLR’s research and technology department, Dr. Wolfgang Epple, explained the idea behind the autonomous technology. “Customers are much more likely to accept highly-automated and fully autonomous vehicles if the car reacts in the same way as the driver,” stated Epple.
“By understanding and measuring positive driving behaviors we can ensure that an autonomous Jaguar or Land Rover of the future will not simply perform a robotic function.” The data recorded by the sensors will also be given to insurance companies so the companies can put together the first insurance policies for self-driving vehicles. There’s no word on when JLR will reveal its autonomous technology or what model it will make its debut on. But an autonomous car that drives like a human sounds like a terrifying thing.