Volvo Car Australia is supporting a national initiative to road test autonomous driving technology on Australian roads for the first time ever.
Today Volvo has joined the ARRB Group, Australia’s national independent road research agency, and the South Australia Government to announce Australia’s first autonomous vehicle demonstration trials will begin in November this year. The ARRB announced today the trials will coincide with a Driverless Vehicle Conference to be held on November 5-6.
To support the trial Volvo Car Australia will provide an All-New XC90 that will be specially programmed to allow its IntelliSafe Assist (Adaptive Cruise Control including Pilot Assist, Lane Keeping Aid, Distance Alert, and Speed Limiter Function) to be operated hands free, within a controlled environment.
One of Volvo’s top international safety experts, Dr Trent Victor, will be a keynote speaker at the Driverless Vehicle Conference and will assist with the trials. Dr Victor, who is Volvo’s Senior Technical Leader Crash Avoidance, is an internationally recognised safety and crash expert.
Over the past 20 years he has filed more than 20 patents and published over 60 papers while establishing a unique track record of applying behavioural science data to crash avoidance innovation.
Volvo is a global leader in developing autonomous drive technology, and will have more than 100 autonomous cars on the road in Sweden by 2017.
Kevin McCann, Managing Director of Volvo Car Australia said: “As a leader in the development of autonomous drive technologies, Volvo’s aim is to make this technology realistically available for customers in production cars in the near future.
“Volvo believes autonomous drive technology will deliver significant consumer and societal benefits, including improved traffic safety, improved fuel economy, reduced congestion, and the opportunity for improved infrastructure planning.
“We are delighted to be involved with the ARRB demonstration and conference in South Australia, where we believe Volvo Car Australia can make a positive and significant contribution.”
ARRB Group Managing Director Gerard Waldron said: “ARRB will establish how driverless technology needs to be manufactured and introduced for uniquely Australian driving behaviour, our climate and road conditions, including what this means for Australia’s national road infrastructure, markings, surfaces and roadside signage.
“The trials in South Australia this November will be the first of many trials nationally, with discussions underway in a number of jurisdictions. ARRB Group is calling for additional states, territories and partners to support this important national research initiative. We’re seeking technology and automotive industry partners to assist us in Australia’s driverless vehicle innovation,” he added.
List of partners supporting ARRB’s Driverless Vehicles Initiative:
Government of South Australia; Volvo Car Australia; Bosch; Telstra; RAA; Adelaide Airport Limited; Flinders University; Carnegie Mellon University; Cohda Wireless