The Nissan IDS is a new concept in the electric car world and a much anticipated one. The vehicle, which is powered by an artificial-intelligence-driven system designed to take over control of the car in key moments, is expected to make autonomous driving mainstream.
Nissan hopes to embed the system into many of its vehicles by 2020. Nissan’s CEO Carlos Ghosn explained that the new car could revolutionize how drivers interact with their vehicles. The company also said that a ‘key point’ behind the new prototype was communication between the car and driver and between the car and other people.
The new vehicle is fully electric and its 60 kWh battery can reportedly pull off a 500 km range. The concept car also has better aerodynamics than the previous Leaf-based models which allows it to travel longer distances. Drivers can couple their vehicles with their smartphones to wirelessly charge their handsets and access the Piloted Park feature.
Drivers can opt for two modes manual or piloted drive. As a result, you can choose for piloted drive whenever you don’t feel like driving, have your hands full or just want to relax. While the mode is fully automated, the driver is alerted by the system when he or she needs to take over and drive manually.
Nissan’s newly unveiled model is one more step toward a safer auto-pilot. And as more car makers develop such systems into their cars, this will trigger more improvements, lower costs and safer public roads.
The car’s AI-based system is also interacting with the driver, passengers and pedestrians in a personalized way. Messages and alerts are beamed through its dash-mounted LED screen.
The system is very similar to Apple’s Siri voice recognition system and Microsoft’s robotic personal assistant. But while the driver chooses to drive the car him-/herself the car system and sensors permanently monitor road conditions and provide helpful information on traffic and daily schedule.
To switch to piloted mode you will only need to push a glowing button in the middle of the steering wheel. For that point on, the car takes over and mimics the driver’s method of driving.
Nissan’s concept car was also designed to make driving a more social experience. While that may be true in theory, it is nearly impossible in practical world especially in the U.S. when most drivers drive alone.
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