Jaguar Land Rover is investing in a 41-mile ‘living laboratory’ project on UK roads to develop new connected and autonomous vehicle (CAV) technologies. The new CAV test corridor includes roads around Coventry and Solihull.
The £5.5m (US$8m) UK-CITE (UK Connected Intelligent Transport Environment) project will create the first test route capable of testing both vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure systems on public roads in the UK. New roadside communications equipment will be installed along the route during the three-year project to enable the testing of a fleet of up to 100 connected and highly automated cars, including five JLR research vehicles.
The fleet will be used to test a range of different communication technologies that could share information at very high speeds between cars, and between cars and roadside infrastructure, including traffic lights and overhead gantries.
The UK government will support the project with a £3.41m grant from the UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK.
Dr Wolfgang Epple, director of research and technology at JLR, said, “This real-life laboratory will allow us to test new connected and autonomous vehicle technologies on five different types of roads and junctions. Similar research corridors already exist in other parts of Europe so this test route is exactly the sort of innovation infrastructure the UK needs to compete globally.”
Meanwhile, JLR is also investing in a multi-million pound research project that will help future autonomous vehicles drive naturally like human drivers, rather than like robots.
A fleet of JLR vehicles will be driven daily by employees of the London borough of Greenwich, to establish how a range of different drivers react to real-world driving situations, including heavy traffic, busy junctions, road works and bad weather. Data from sensors in these cars will reveal the natural driving behaviors and decision-making that drivers make while driving, including complex and stressful scenarios.
The three-year £5.5m (US$8m) Move-UK project, led by Bosch, will also use this data to help develop insurance policies for future autonomous cars. Insurance experts will provide their expertise on the liability of certain scenarios using the real-world driving data supplied by the fleet of test cars.
The research will also be supported by the UK government with a £2.75m (US$3.98m) grant from Innovate UK.
February 10, 2016