Engineers from Continental and BMW will meet to define the prerequisites for autonomous cars that would have the ability to drive themselves. This driving would be done on limited-access highways and would be possible from 2020 onward.
Continental has pursued the autonomous car movement vigorously and last week even testified in front of the Michigan State Board of Transportation. The company insisted local lawmakers pass a bill that legalizes autonomous cars in the state of Michigan. Continental is currently licensed to operate autonomous cars in Nevada.
Continental partnered with BMW because the German automaker intends to have semi-automated vehicles on the road by 2016 and completely automatically piloted cars on the public roads by 2025.
BMW and Continental have stiff competition. Audi already has autonomous cars on Nevada freeways and Mercedes-Benz is about to unveil its 2014 S-Class that employs partial autonomous technology. Let’s also remember that Google is the pioneer of them all.
The green side of things when talking about autonomous vehicles, besides being more disciplined in traffic, is that they can regulate fuel consumption by themselves and this will in turn reduce city pollution.