Toyota offered test drives of an experimental vehicle featuring a newly developed automated driving system, Urban Teammate, during the 42nd G7 Summit in Ise-Shima, held on May 26 and 27.
In keeping with the philosophy behind Toyota’s Mobility Teammate Concept ― which the company claims is a unique approach to automated driving that “stresses the importance of a partner-like relationship between people and cars” – the Urban Teammate system was created to test the application of automated driving technologies on ordinary roads.
Urban Teammate is Toyota’s successor to Highway Teammate, which was unveiled in October last year. Highway Teammate was developed exclusively to enable vehicles to handle every aspect of highway driving without assistance, including negotiating on-ramps and exit ramps.
Toyota developed Urban Teammate with the goal of enabling unassisted automated driving on ordinary roads. In addition to detecting passengers, bicycles and obstacles in and around the vehicle in which the system is installed, Urban Teammate is being developed to operate independently in accordance with local traffic regulations while making use of map data and visual data from intersections and traffic lights.
The system features GPS and cameras, as well as a SPAD Lidar module, which uses high-resolution laser radar technology for environment mapping and recognition.
In order to allow for operation in more complex traffic environments, Toyota plans to improve Urban Teammate using AI technologies and an automated map generation system announced in December 2015. The map generation system utilizes Cosmic, an automated spatial information generation technology to create the high-precision maps necessary for automated driving.
Based on the Mobility Teammate Concept, Toyota will enhance its development of these automated driving technologies with the aim of achieving a society where mobility means safety, efficiency and freedom.