Audi's autonomous A7
Autonomous car or just easy driving?
Every brand is thinking about cars autonomously , Audi began with this idea in 2009 with the Audi TTS.
In 2009, the TTS drove autonomously on the Bonneville salt flats and carved the brand’s four-ring logo into the ground. This was the beginning of Audi’s revolution, the start of the autonomous technology for Audi. In 2010, the same car completed the course of Pikes Peak in 27 minutes. It wasn’t very fast but the TTS drove autonomously the whole time. In 2012, an autonomous RS7 fourfolded the Hockenheimring F1 track with a speed of 150 mph. In 2014, Audi came with a car that could park autonomously and drive in stop and go traffic.
Now we have the new Audi technology “Highway Pilot” . The car (Audi A7) can drive autonomously on the highway. The car can speed up, slow down or change lanes all by itself. When the highway ends or you approach your exit, you need to resume your driving.The car will alert the driver with an audio tune and lights on the dash will pop up, when the person not reacts in a few seconds, the car activates its hazards lights and slows down to a stop and if possible moving the car to the hard shoulder.
How to activate the highway pilot? It’s very easy, just wait when the car’s system determines it’s safe to turn on autopilot, press the two buttons on the steering wheel and the car will drive autonomously. The steering wheel retracts a few inches just far enough to sit comfortably and close enough to grab the steering wheel.
The Audi A7 is not an autonomous car but a comfortable Audi sedan that makes it possible to drive safer, easier and more relaxed. Taking small steps is much easier for the automakers and the regulators. They must adjust their factory and the law. If you go too fast ( for example the Google car) the people will not be able to follow. The theory of Audi is here taking small steps but making a big difference for the customer.