The car manufacturers are putting a lot of effort in the development of autonomous cars

Doing office tasks, reading the news or playing with the kids while the car is driving autonomous. This is the vision car manufacturers have.

The biggest cities in the world, the mega cities are all growing. The traffic is increasing, the traffic jams as well. “The people are spending their life time in the car. That’s why there is the idea to have a third room in your life, besides the home and the office.” said Alex Gern, manager of the autonomous driving division at Mercedes Benz. The driver shall be able to spend his time on useful things. All manufacturers are working on ideas how to make cars smarter and be able to drive autonomous. The German manufacturers BMW and Audi are developing systems which enable the car to find parking spots by themselves. BMW and Volkswagen are experimenting with gesture controlled displays in the cockpit which don’t need to be touched anymore.

In January Daimler presented the F 015, a research vehicle, which is able to drive autonomous and can be controlled via smartphone app. It’s front seats can be turned around so that the passengers can face each other. Until 2030 these kind of cars shall roll on the streets. The first features of the new cars are already available today and will keep on improving. There are already technologies on the market, which assist on parking or keeps the distance to car in the front. But for autonomous cars the legal framework has not been built yet.

The car is becoming more and more connected to the internet. Many drivers are already integrating their phone in order to use voice command, do phone calls and play music. “We want to enable the car to predict what the customer wants” Says Arwed Nietroj, CIO of Mercedes-Benz R&D in North-America.

That it takes time to develop this kind of artificial intelligence has reasons: The expectations on the quality of systems in cars are very high, since the impact might be huge. A car can be used for 15 years or longer, but electronics and software is developing way faster.