TRAVERSE CITY, MI – Technological obstacles won’t hold back the advent of autonomous, driverless cars.
That’s the considered judgment of Swamy Kotagiri, chief technology officer of Magna International, a speaker at the Center for Automotive Research’s Management Briefing Seminars.
“We can get there with the technology,” he says in a question-and-answer session following his Thursday address. “The biggest hurdles relate to how much infrastructure (is necessary) and issues related to ethics and liability.”
Kotagiri says autonomous cars ultimately may not even have steering wheels. And if there are accidents, questions about who is responsible likely will be problematic. “Is it the owner, the manufacturer or others?” he asks.
Still, “I strongly believe it’s not a question of technology,” Kotagiri says. “When it is going to happen is the biggest question right now.”
Last fall, the Canadian supplier took a step toward autonomous vehicles by launching the latest version of its driver-assistance EYERIS vision system on the Cadillac ATS and Dongfeng Honda Spirior.
EYERIS enables lane-departure warning, traffic-sign recognition and forward-collision warning, and the newest version (Gen 2.5) adds lane-keeping assistance, glare-free high beams and collision mitigation, as well as increased memory and processing power.
Magna has been supplying automotive camera systems for more than 25 years and last year produced its 10 millionth rearview camera at its Holly, MI, plant.