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article imageAutonomous cars are not happening anytime soon: Ford

By Tim Sandle     Apr 12, 2019 in Technology
Self-driving cars, which promise to make our journeys far easier, are further away from launching on a mass scale and being sold to consumers according to the CEO of Ford, Jim Hackett
Hackett, in a recent statement, has indicated that Ford are to scale back their ambitions for self-driving cars. Also in the statement is an indication that the functionality of the first generation of autonomous-cars-for-consumers will be paired down.
Quoted by Engagdet, Hackett states: "We overestimated the arrival of autonomous vehicles." Although Hackett remans confident that Ford can launch its self-driving car fleet in 2021, the executive notes that "its applications will be narrow, what we call geo-fenced, because the problem is so complex."
Currently Ford are trailing out its self-driving vehicles in the Miami, Washington, D.C. and Detroit areas of the U.S. These vehicles use a virtual driver system developed by Argo AI, which has received investment from Ford to the tune of around $1 billion (in all Ford has invested over $4 billion in self-driving cars).
READ MORE: Why edge computing is key to developing autonomous cars
The admission is significant given the billions of dollars that are being invested in autonomous car development, both by startups, established technology companies like Google, and conventional car manufacturers (as with the case of Ford). As an example Honda and Toyota are ploughing in close $3 billion into designing and developing autonomous vehicle technology.
Ford's delays are mirrored by developments relating to other companies. Uber has stated that its fleet of autonomous cars will not be hitting the road in the foreseeable future; and Waymo has given no indication when its self-driving taxi service, operating in certain geo-fenced areas in Phoenix, Arizona, will accept rides from members of the public.
More about autonomous vehicles, selfdriving cars, Vehicles, Driving
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