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Jaguar Land Rover ‘virtual eyes’ could increase trust in autonomous cars

Self-driving pods are being fitted with virtual eyes from Jaguar Land Rover as part of research into engaging road user trust into autonomous vehicles.

The intelligent pods make ‘eye contact’ with pedestrians to signal intent

The intelligent pods make ‘eye contact’ with pedestrians to signal intent

Research studies suggest that as many as 63% of pedestrians worry about how safe it will be to cross the road in the future.

To help combat this, the virtual eye technology – supplied by Jaguar Land Rover as part of the UK Autodrive project – makes ‘eye contact’ with pedestrians to show that the pod has identified them and intends to take avoiding action.

Pete Bennett, future mobility research manager at Jaguar Land Rover, said: “It’s second-nature to glance at the driver of the approaching vehicle before stepping into the road. Understanding how this translates in tomorrow’s more automated world is important.

“We want to know if it is beneficial to provide humans with information about a vehicle’s intentions or whether simply letting a pedestrian know it has been recognised is enough to improve confidence.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. Natalie edits all the Fleet World websites and newsletters, and loves to hear about any latest industry news.