Driverless cars take to United Kingdom roads

Jaguar Land Rover goes driverless: Car giant kicks off its tests on British roads

Jaguar Land Rover starts testing autonomous cars on UK roads

The UK's biggest auto manufacturer, Jaguar Land Rover, owned by India's Tata Motors, has been testing driverless cars on public roads.

The autonomous and connected vehicle technology trials are now live on public roads in Coventry.

It was part of government-backed trials aimed at promoting more widespread use of self-drive vehicles by 2020.

Forming part of the £20m UK Autodrive project, JLR is testing a range of new technologies including cars that can talk to each other to improve safety.

JLR and TMETC are working on their own self-driving vehicle technology in a real-world setting, much like the multiple other trials taking place in locations across the United Kingdom including the M40 motorway, southeast London and other areas. However, one of Waymo's staff will be present in the vehicle. Between them, they have started trialling connected vehicle features in West Midlands city, while JLR and TMETC are also trialling their self-driving research tech.

Jaguar Land Rover goes driverless: Car giant kicks off its tests on British roads

JLR is in the midst of developing fully and semi-autonomous vehicle technologies to give people the choice, with some feeling hesitant about giving up full control to a driverless auto. Many auto manufacturers use the site to test prototype cars and develop new technologies on roads that simulate the full range of driving conditions and inside laboratories that can change conditions from Arctic to Saharan at the flick of a switch. I had a go in their simulator. Their findings are sobering, as a BBC correspondent points out. "In addition, research showed that drivers of automated vehicles took, on average, six times longer to respond to emergency braking of other vehicles compared to manual drivers". Cuts in accidents, pollution, congestion.

But there are still plenty of significant problems that need to be ironed out before we get there.

An automated and electric vehicles bill is now being debated in the United Kingdom parliament to set out how new technologies will operate in Britain. Britain's biggest automaker is now firmly in the race against other automakers as well as tech companies to achieve fully autonomous vehicle technology as soon as possible.

Waymo said earlier this month that it will launch a ride-hailing service with no human behind the steering wheel. It's also testing out both vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure tech.

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