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Volvo unveils IntelliSafe Auto Pilot technology for autonomous cars

The technology is being trialled on 100 XC90s being made available for the Drive Me project in Gothenburg, Sweden, in 2017, which will see families and commuters trial the vehicles on approximately 50 kilometres of selected roads

The interface is intended to provide seamless handover and is activated and deactivated with specially designed paddles on the steering wheel.

On routes where autonomous driving is available, the car gives the driver a message that the Auto Pilot is ready. At the same time, lights on the steering wheel paddles start flashing.

The driver pulls both paddles simultaneously to activate autonomous mode. The lights on the paddles then change to constant green and Auto Pilot confirms that the driving and the supervision has been delegated to the car.

When autonomous driving is no longer available, the driver is prompted to take over again. A sixty-second countdown is displayed.

If the driver, for any reason, doesn’t use the paddles to regain control within this minute, the car will bring itself to a safe stop.

Thomas Ingenlath, SVP design at Volvo Cars, said: “We have designed a user interface that is safe and seamless to use so that drivers can confidently transfer and regain control of the car.” 

Following its use in the Gothenburg project, the IntelliSafe Auto Pilot will then be introduced to the general public.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 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. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.