The UK’s First Driverless Car Could Be On the Horizon

My following article below was originally published by SERIOUS WONDER

Here in the United States talk of driverless cars have been one of the more popular discussions, resulting in a growing competitive race between automobile industries in getting the first driverless car in the market and on the roads. Whether it’s Tesla, Audi, Mercedes, or the newly emerged competition of automated ride-sharing services between Google and Uber, it’s been made very clear that our roads will soon be welcoming an entire fleet of driverless vehicles in the next few years.

For the U.K., however, with a new major review confirming the safety and compatibility of driverless cars for British roads, these cars could very well be emerging sooner rather than later. Say hello to the Lutz pod – one of the more popular designs you’ll likely see driving around the U.K. in the next couple of years.

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“Driverless cars are the future. I want Britain to be at the forefront of this exciting new development, to embrace a technology that could transform our roads and open up a brand new route for global investment.” – Transport Minister Claire Perry

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In the report the Department of Transport makes the case that driverless vehicles will not only make people more productive drivers, but subsequently offer greater mobility, improve road safety, and reduce both emissions and congestion. Grabbing onto this great opportunity, the RDM Group, known for their supply of world class products and engineering services to the automotive industry, have unveiled their Lutz pod design, which will carry passengers throughout pedestrian spaces, i.e. shopping centers, theme parks, etc.

The Lutz pod is a small, two-passenger automated electric vehicle that can cover around 40 miles, at a top speed of 15mph, in a single charge. Specs wise, the Lutz carries twin cameras and LIDAR sensors in the front, two more cameras and a LIDAR on the back, with a subsequent pair of cameras fitted on each side. This provides the vehicle a fully detailed 360-degree purview of its surroundings.

“Technology such as driverless vehicles, intelligent phone apps, and social media, will transform how we travel in the future – making journeys faster, easier, and more connected.” – RDM Group

First production models of the Lutz pod are set to be completed in June of this year.

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