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Continental Sees Autonomous Vehicles “Ready for Production” by 2020

Mega-supplier receives testing license from Nevada.

by on Dec.20, 2012

Continental offers an image of what tomorrow's autonomous vehicle might look like.

Continental, one of the world’s top automotive suppliers, has become the first company to win approval from the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles to test autonomous vehicles on the state’s wide open highway.

With extensive stretches of good roads with little traffic, Nevada has become a popular state for testing out new autonomous vehicle technologies – which led the state to enact new rules creating a special class of license for self-driven automobiles. The first official license plate, which features an infinity symbol, was granted to Google, the tech firm taking a lead in the field. Continental is the first automotive supplier to seek and receive the special license.

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“As a company, Continental’s strategy is clearly focused on making this type of future technology a reality. It’s clear to us that automated driving will be a key element in the mobility of the future,” said Elmar Degenhart, chairman of the executive board of Continental. “As a system supplier, we are perfectly positioned to develop and launch series production of solutions for partially automated systems for our customers by 2016.”

But the goal, he said, is to take the technology even further, “ultimately (with) fully automated driving, even at higher speeds and in more complex driving situations, ready for production by 2020 or 2025.”


Highway Deaths Plunge – Creating Opportunities for Safety Suppliers

Could zero fatalities be possible?

by on Nov.10, 2009

Advanced safety technology is clearly saving lives, but still more is needed. Ford plans to launch this combination airbag and seatbelt on the 2011 Explorer.

Advanced safety technology is clearly saving lives, but still more is needed. Ford plans to launch this combination airbag and seatbelt on the next-generation 2011 Explorer.

How many highway deaths are too many?  At one point, not all that long ago, as many Americans were being killed on the roadways, each year, as died during the entire Vietnam War.  But in recent times, the figures have begun to fall, and surprisingly fast.

As recently as 2005, the figure stood at 43,000, according to government data, but if the current run rate holds, highway deaths should dip to 35,000 for all of 2009.  Yet there are those who believe even that figure can be slashed dramatically.

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The automotive supplier, Germany’s Continental, has outlined its own plan, which it dubs “Vision of Zero,” something Samir Salman, CEO of the company’s American subsidiary admits “is a vision, but we can get there.”  Not surprisingly, he sees the answer in the form of advanced safety technology – like the gear that Continental sells.