Ford plans to build vehicle without steering wheels or pedals by 2021

Ford plans to build vehicle without steering wheels or pedals by 2021

Ford plans to build vehicle without steering wheels or pedals by 2021

Written by Staff Writer

17 Aug, 2016 | 4:53 pm

Ford had announced that they have made plans to build a fully autonomous vehicle without a steering wheel or pedals by 2021. The vehicle will be aimed at ride-hailing and ride-sharing fleets.

To get there, Ford is working with a number of startups, including a new investment in Velodyne, a firm that makes LIDAR sensors; the acquisition of SAIPS, an Israeli company that makes computer vision and machine learning software; an exclusive licensing agreement with “virtual retina” technology company Nirenberg Neuroscience, LLC; and a previously announced investment in 3D-mapping company Civil Maps.

The company is also expanding its research and innovation center in Palo Alto and plans to double the size of its team there by the end of next year. Ford executives said the company wasn’t at the stage where it could show a vehicle, or even talk about what that vehicle might look like. Instead, it’s focused on getting the hardware and software ready for a driverless car.

The goal is to build a vehicle to the SAE Level 4 standard of automation. This would give the car the ability to handle all aspects of driving, although limited to certain approved areas or regions. A car could be restricted to only the island of Manhattan, or to take certain approved routes outside of Manhattan to get to the airport or Yankee Stadium.

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