An autonomous driving revolution is about to happen. Two European companies British Delphi Automotive PLC and Transdev Group, based in Paris, France, are developing a partnership program on a driverless transportation system. Starting off with pilot projects in France, the two companies are planning to maximally expand the program and eventually elaborate an automated transportation service in all corners of the world.
Though Transdev is not still widely known to most those interested in this kind of services, the company boasts over 80 thousand employees and runs 40 thousand vehicles in 19 countries throughout the world. Thus, they’ve got good positions in the transportation industry which are, in fact, difficult to match. Actually, the French company plans to manage the project including remote control operators, and other services like routing, dispatch, and ticket provision.
The British project participant is going to contribute to an autonomous vehicle system which is right now being developed in partnership with an Israeli-based company Mobileye, a mapping expert, which will eventually be merged with Intel, an American chipmaker.
The autonomous service has already been started in Normandy, France. This pilot project will provide the cooperating companies with a possibility to test the service functioning, as well as it will facilitate transportation issues in certain areas. Later on, the companies will try launching a similar pilot in the French capital where two driverless cars and one shuttle bus will have started to operate connecting the railway station and a local campus area by the end of the current year. The plans reveal intentions to run those vehicles completely driverless in the nearest future. During the first tests, a technical driver will monitor the vehicle processes, though.
Renault’s electric minicars Zoe will be utilized by the venture on this route. The aforementioned Paris project will run two of such vehicles and one shuttle introducing them into the project to initiate the testing procedures in the current year.
The cooperating companies are planning to contribute to self-driving autonomous vehicles development and necessary infrastructure aiming at sustainable commercial service creation. The current plans also envision creating the first autonomous transportation service on the roads controlled by remote operators by 2018 and bringing the service to a wider public by 2019.