A recent Valeo test vehicle in Tokyo demonstrated how Scala lidars and a front camera, combined with vehicle-to-infrastructure communication, could autonomously steer through crowded boulevards, thread between lumbering trucks and zipping passenger vehicles, while navigating pedestrians.
The system is Level 4-capable but operates in Level 2 mode during public testing, with a Valeo engineer always at the ready to take control.
The self-driving system had its faltering moments, usually while negotiating scenarios that require bending traffic rules — such as leaving a lane to go around idling trucks or bicyclists. And the steering and braking aren’t always as smooth as would be done with a human touch.
Valeo engineers say that coming versions will better address such borderline scenarios. As for dynamics, the supplier says matters of acceleration and steering are up to the manufacturer. Valeo’s technology concerns itself with perceiving and interpreting the world around the vehicle.
Valeo wants to package its driver-assist systems into tailored technology sets for automakers in a plug-and-play model.
The sets will integrate the safety systems inside the vehicle and connect with the surrounding infrastructure.