Ford’s autonomous Fusion Hybrid just got smarter.
Ford officials announced recently that it’s releasing its next generation Fusion Hybrid autonomous development vehicle, just before two industry shows in January.
The next-generation vehicle has new computer hardware to improve on processing power. It’s electrical controls are also closer to what people will see on production vehicles.
The vehicle also comes with improved sensor technology, which includes how the sensors are placed to enable the vehicle to see what’s around it better. It comes with new LiDAR sensors that have more targeted field of vision and less sensors. Instead of four sensors, there will be two.
The new vehicle also has updates to the platform itself and to the virtual driver system.
Ford officials said the next generation of autonomous vehicle shows its commitment to the driverless car industry. Ford released its current generation three years ago and vowed to continue to improve upon the technology.
Earlier this year, Ford announced that it intends to offer high-volume, full autonomous vehicles for ride sharing in 2021. It also decided to invest in and collaborate with four startup companies on autonomous vehicle development.
“The next decade will be defined by automation of the automobile, and we see autonomous vehicles as having as significant an impact on society as Ford’s moving assembly line did 100 years ago,” said Mark Fields, Ford president and CEO, in a news release in August. “We’re dedicated to putting on the road an autonomous vehicle that can improve safety and solve social and environmental challenges for millions of people – not just those who can afford luxury vehicles.”
The new technology is ready just in time for the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) which will be in Las Vegas from January 5-8, and the 2017 North American International Auto Show, which will be in Detroit from January 8-22. Stay tuned to TFLcar for more updates on both upcoming shows.
Check out this related TFLcar video where we go for a ride in an autonomous Ford Fusion: