Argo AI 3rd Gen Self-Driving Cars To Be Tested In Detroit, 2021 Launch Targeted
Fords' autonomous vehicle subsidiary, Argo AI has announced the launched of its third generation of self-driving cars and stated that to accelerate progress more and hit their 2021 official launch target, it will also expand its tests to the city of Detroit, United States.
Detroit is the fifth city in the United States in which the third generation of Argo AI's autonomous car will be tested. The tests have already taken place in Pittsburgh, Palo Alto, Miami and Washington and now part of the road tests will be conducted in the Corktown area of Detroit, near the Michigan Central Station that Ford acquired in 2018 to turn the building into the center of its autonomous vehicle operations.
Detroit was chosen for the road tests as it poses a challenge to vehicles because of its variety of conditions, from the wide streets to unmarked lanes to residential areas with narrow streets and vehicles parked on both sides. This will help the Argo AI's self-driving vehicles to be tougher when it launched commercially.
Argo AI's 3rd generation self-driving car uses the platform of the Ford Fusion Hybrid and while testing, have a person in the driver's seat for added safety measure and a co-pilot that controls the performance of the vehicle.
Peter Rander, president of Argo AI, revealed in a statement that the 3rd gen self-driving vehicles are"equipped with new technology that is one step closer to production specifications, but also modifications that are designed to help ensure their safety in various conditions.
Rander also noted that the third generation has a set of improved sensors, including new sets of radar and cameras with higher resolution and a greater dynamic range, which allows the passenger to see what is coming even if it is still far ahead, and detect what the object is that so to avoid accidents and do precautionary actions.
In addition, Ford Fusion Hybrids that will be used in Detroit will have a new computer system, with more processing power that generates less heat and noise inside the vehicle, making it one of the classiest cars use for testing.
In its safety function, the third generation of Argo AI's autonomous car has redundant braking and steering systems to help maintain control of vehicle movement in the event that one of the units stops working.
Argo AI did not say how many units of the Ford Fusion Hybrids are in testing or will be part of the testing in the five US cities. However, what's clear is Ford, Argo AI's mother company is serious about getting their spot in the autonomous vehicle industry.
Ford announced in February 2017 that it would invest $900 million in five years, with the aim of developing a virtual driver system for the autonomous driving vehicle of Argo AI. It also recently partnered with Volkswagen, which is likely to include an investment in Argo AI, which will be beneficial for the company.
Argo AI has indicated on several occasions that it plans to launch its commercial versions of their autonomous vehicles in 2021, initially to be used by passenger and parcel transport companies and will aim to rival Google's affiliated Waymo as well as Aurora's software group.