Renault Nissan Alliance chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn says autonomous driving will transform our cars and make them safer.
Renault Nissan Alliance chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn says autonomous driving will transform our cars and make them safer.

Autonomous driving technology could be here by 2016

CARS which drive themselves in stop-start traffic could be available as soon as next year.

The only thing holding the technology back is government and regulartory bodies.

That's the opinion of Renault Nissan Alliance chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn, who has told a technology conference that autonomous driving will transform our cars and make them safer.

"All carmakers are developing this technology because it will make cars safer," Ghosn said during the opening keynote session of Mobile World Congress 2015.

"It's going to come in waves."

Ghosn outlined the Renault Nissan Alliance's timeline for rolling out Autonomous Drive technology over the next several years.

The first wave will come in 2016, with a feature that will allow the car to negotiate stop-and-go traffic without direct driver intervention.

The second wave, in 2018, will include the car's ability to drive itself on the highway, including changing lanes. The third wave will feature technology that permits the car to handle more complex city driving autonomously.

In all these cases, Ghosn said, the driver will remain in control at the wheel and have the option to use the technology when appropriate.

So-called driverless cars are much further into the future, at least 10 years away, he said.

Many of the luxury carmakers already have technology implemented which makes driving easier. Radar cruise control enables users to leave complete speed control to the vehicle, always maintaining a safe distance from the car in front. 

Mercedes-Benz vehicles have technology which stops the vehicle from straying out of its lane. Drivers can remove their hands from the wheel and the vehicle will stay within the lines...until the car identifies there has been no steering input and requires hands back on the wheel. 


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