Nissan has unveiled a first in driver assistance technology, combining navigated highway driving with hands-off single-lane driving capabilities. Expanding on the ProPILOT system, the technology will debut on the Japanese-market Nissan Skyline later this year.
Designed for on-ramp to off-ramp (ramp-to-ramp) highway driving, the new system engages with the vehicle’s navigation system to help manoeuvre the car according to a predefined route on designated roadways. For the first time, the system also enables hands-off driving while cruising in a single lane.
To enable the latest functions of the new system, drivers must first set their destination in the navigation system, creating a predefined travel route. Once the car enters the highway, the new system’s navigated driving becomes available.
Upon activation using a predefined route, the system will assist the driver with traveling on a multi-lane highway until reaching the highway exit on a predefined route — helping to handle passing, lane diversions and lane exiting.
The new ProPILOT also enables hands-off driving while cruising in a given lane. When the vehicle approaches a road divide, or when passing a slower vehicle is possible, the system judges the appropriate timing of branching off or passing based on information from the navigation system and 360 degree sensing. Audio and visual guidance is given to the driver, who is prompted to put both hands on the steering wheel and confirm the start of these operations with a switch.
The vehicle uses a combination of cameras, radars, sonars, GPS and 3D high-definition map data (HD map) to provide 360 degree, real-time information of the surrounding environment and the vehicle’s precise location on the road. It uses this to provide a smooth driving experience, similar to that produced by an experienced driver. A monitoring system in the cabin continually confirms that the driver’s attention is on the road.