Audi's vehicle-to-everything communication keeps getting smarter.
Earlier this year, Audi announced that it would start testing new technology with life-saving and life-improving applications. The life-improving features of Audi's vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technology already exist in the form of the Audi Traffic Light Information system. It only works in select cities, but the system can tell you exactly when a light will turn green and suggest a speed for you to make it through or coast until a red light changes.
With help from the Virginia Department of Transportation and Qualcomm, Audi will introduce a new feature for its cellular vehicle-to-everything (C-V2X) communication technology that aims to make construction zones safer. Using the 5.9 GHz wireless communications band, your Audi can now alert you to incoming construction zones so you can move over safely.
Suppose you are driving in a 2021 Audi Q8 equipped with the Qualcomm C-V2X platform, and you come up to an active construction site on the highway. If the roadside personnel wear vests fitted with the same V-V2X technology, the Q8 can send a few different signals to the Virtual Cockpit display (pictured above), alerting the driver before the construction zone reaches their line of sight. These messages range from broad alerts of an upcoming work zone to specific instructions to merge left when a lane closes ahead.
"The deployment of C-V2X on the Virginia Smart Road Corridor allows a new generation of vehicles capable of communicating not just through cellular towers but also directly with roadside infrastructure and vulnerable road users," said Pom Malhotra, director, Connected Services, Audi of America. "Today's milestone will allow Audi to accelerate the deployment of innovative use cases that have the potential to increase driver confidence on the road by providing warning - and in the future, take autonomous action - when sensing an impending collision or even a traffic rule violation."
Audi believes this technology has numerous applications that haven't even been thought of yet. Applying this tech around the United States will require some help from state and local governments, but by partnering with local DOTs, Audi feels confident that it can expand its C-V2X to make roads safer.