Tag Archives: autonomous

Toyota Envisions a World of Driverless Vehicles and Services

 

Industry trends show that dramatic changes in driving are just around the corner, as major corporations prepare to have autonomous cars deliver everything from pizza to packages. Toyota is preparing for this coming driverless car era by developing autonomous technology of its own — and also by planning its own mobility services.

Currently, Japan’s largest automaker is teaming up with companies like Amazon, Uber, and even Pizza Hut to develop self-driving technology and services. Toyota’s autonomous vehicle concept, developed in partnership with these companies, was unveiled in January.

Rather than just building vehicles for other companies to use, Toyota is also looking for ways to apply its tried-and-true “kaizen” philosophy to the new world of ride sharing, self-driving deliveries, and other services.

“(Toyota sees) a synergy between autonomous driving and mobility as a service,” financial analyst Christopher Richter told the Financial Times.

The automaker is confident that its approach to manufacturing — which prioritizes strict attention to efficiency, development, and improvement at every step of the way — will translate into success at providing services to consumers as well. It’s also an approach that could help Toyota and its partners maintain and improve the effectiveness and safety of autonomous driving technology and services as they become more widespread.

Toyota Partners With Startup to Improve Autonomous Vehicle Systems

The automobile market has stretched far beyond just building and engineering reliable, long-lasting cars, with more automakers than ever dipping their toes into the world of technology and investing in futuristic features like autonomous vehicle systems. Toyota is one of these companies, having recently announced a partnership between the Toyota Research Institute and Allianz Ventures. The collaboration will give rise to Nauto, a data-collection startup that will use human driver data to improve autonomous driving.

Toyota isn’t the only one cashing in on Nauto. BMW i Ventures and another unnamed auto manufacturer also have stakes in the startup, as they seek to use the system’s technology for the same purpose. The anonymous data collection is done using a small box containing a camera and computer that attaches to a vehicle’s windshield. The camera will then monitor the driver’s habits, learn how to navigate complicated roads, and collect traffic data.

Eventually Nauto would like to program its technology into all vehicles in order to collect even more data for future autonomous vehicle systems, but for the moment, Toyota, BMW, and another manufacturer are the only ones involved in the startup. BMW and Toyota have worked together in the past and are currently also said to be developing a vehicle together, so they’re no strangers to collaborating.