UK’s largest connected and self-driving vehicle project ready for city streets

23 Jun 2017

The Arup-led UK Autodrive consortium, the UK’s first collaborative trial of connected and autonomous vehicle technology, has been given the green light to move out onto city streets after successfully completing the final set of private test track demonstrations.

Project partners, including Jaguar Land Rover, Ford and Tata Motors European Technical Centre, came together at the HORIBA MIRA Proving Ground in Nuneaton to demonstrate a series of connected car and autonomous vehicle technologies that are now ready to be trialled on the roads of Milton Keynes and Coventry.

UK Autodrive is the first project in the UK to showcase the benefits of having vehicles that can “talk” to each other across multiple car brands. Over two sets of trials the car-makers have jointly demonstrated the following connected car features:

  • Warnings to drivers about other connected cars ahead braking heavily which could lower the risk of rear-end collisions
  • Information from traffic lights advising drivers of the optimum speed to reduce the likelihood of meeting a red light which improves traffic flow and reduces emissions
  • Warnings to drivers when an emergency vehicle is approaching minimising congestion and potentially reducing the time it takes for the emergency services to reach their destination
  • Warnings to drivers when other cars are detected at a junction and there is high probability of a collision.
  • ‘In-Vehicle Signage’ where connected cars receive traffic information sent from road-side units ensuring drivers do not miss important notifications such as changes of speed limit or temporary lane closures.
  • “The successful completion of the proving ground trials marks a significant milestone for the project team, and we are now looking forward to demonstrating the benefits of these exciting new technologies in the real-world settings of Milton Keynes and Coventry. Once the technology becomes widely available, we anticipate huge potential benefits in terms of road safety, improved traffic flow and general access to transport, so we’re really excited about being able to demonstrate this on real roads.”

    — Tim Armitage Arup’s UK Autodrive Project Director

    The first set of public road trials are due to take place in Milton Keynes and Coventry by the end of this year, initially on segregated sections of roads, before evolving into open road trials and demonstrations as the project draws to a close in summer 2018.

    For more about the project visit www.ukautodrive.com.

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  • The Arup-led UK Autodrive consortium, has been given the green light to move out onto city streets after successfully completing the final set of private test track demonstrations.