Electric car maker Tesla Motors Inc.’s CEO Elon Musk is considering adding an autopilot system technology to its vehicles and has been discussing such technology with Google Inc.
Google has already begun developing its very own self driving technology though Musk’s idea is more of an airplane’s auto pilot system. According to Musk, technologies that can take over for drivers are one of the many logical evolutions in cars. “I like the word auto pilot more than I like the word self-driving. Self-driving sounds like it’s going to do something you don’t want it to do. Auto pilot is a good thing to have in planes, and we should have it in cars,” he said in an interview.
Regulators and giants in the car making industry are still looking into how such technology can increase driver safety and convenience. According to Nissan Motor Co. and government officials, vehicles making use of such technology might not be available in showrooms until a decade. Google, on the other hand predicts half a decade is enough for such technology to reach the masses.
Although Google has planned to release the technology in a matter of five years, it is deemed to be quite expensive. “The problem with Google’s current approach is that the sensor system is too expensive. It’s better to have an optical system, basically cameras with software that is able to figure out what’s going on just by looking at things,” said Musk.
According to Musk, Tesla might be developing its own auto pilot system that is based on cameras instead. However, the possibility of doing a joint venture with Google is still in light. On the other hand, Tesla investor Toyota has Motor Corp has showcased a driverless test vehicle in Las Vegas. The car was equipped with a Lidar device, radar, cameras and sensors.