Ford is moving ahead at a fast pace with the development of its autonomous cars. The American carmaker claims to have its fully self-driven cars on the road in a commercial setting, such as a ride-sharing program, by 2021.
Major carmakers with the help of tech companies are developing autonomous vehicles. Ford is not the only company which is trying to bring self-driving cars to market during the next five years.
Ford CEO, Mark Fields stated that "the term autonomous vehicles is just thrown about so liberally in this industry. I mean, there are five levels of autonomy. My only fear in the industry is somebody tries to come out with one of those [self-driving cars] before it's ready and then there's an event. That fear has driven Ford to take a very different approach with its self-driving cars".
Out in the market, there are many automakers who are rolling out level three autonomous systems in their vehicles before pursuing full autonomy. These cars can drive without any assist in some situations e.g. on the highway, but, still require a human to take control in certain situations.
The American carmaker claims that is aiming to launch its first self-driving car with level four autonomy. Now level four autonomy means that the vehicles won't have a brake pedal, accelerator, or steering wheel. It will drive on its own in a planned geographic area without human interference.
Fields also stated, "one of the reasons we're not pursuing Level 3, which is a Tesla Autopilot-type, is we struggle with, 'how do you make a responsible and timely handoff with the driver?'That's why we think going to Level 4 is really important because it really pushes us to really think through how do we make sure this is safe, efficient, and acceptable for customers."
Keeping all the above factors in mind, the company claims that when they will launch their first level-four autonomous car, they won't be worried about self-driving cars killing its owners.
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If a self-driving car is not your cup of tea and you need something muscular, then click below on the photo gallery to check out the latest images of the 2017 Ford Mustang.