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Volkswagen CEO Thomas Schafer says they plan to mainstream autonomous driving vehicles by the end of the decade.


Just recently, the US-based company Argo, which focused on developing self-driving technologies, announced it is shutting down. Some of the firm’s employees are reportedly going to be hired by the two largest investors in Argo, Volkswagen and Ford, and it seems that the bankruptcy doesn’t bother the German manufacturer at all. Despite its $2.6 billion investment into Argo, the Wolfsburg-based manufacturer believes it is on track to launch mainstream autonomous vehicles by the end of the decade.

VW’s boss Thomas Schafer recently commented on the topic and said the automaker is “consolidating its development partnerships” without giving further details. However, Schafer said there are major difficulties for the entire industry but the investments should not stop as VW needs to be early in the game.

“You have to put focus on [autonomous driving] and that is why we are pushing so hard in the CV division because once it happens it opens up profit pools and opportunities. I wouldn’t say the winner takes it all but it’s a game that you need to be in early. You can not wait and then fast forward so that’s why we’re totally focusing on it,” Schafer told Autocar.

Interestingly, Volkswagen will rely on its commercial vehicle division to lead the company’s autonomous strategy. That department is currently working on a fully self-driving version of the ID. Buzz, which is expected to be deployed as a robotaxi and delivery vehicle by the middle of the decade. It’s still in the early stages of development and Volkswagen is currently evaluating whether that vehicle needs a steering wheel or not.

VW’s program is planned to start in Hamburg, Germany, where the firm currently runs autonomous test vehicles based on the ID. Buzz. If everything goes according to the plan, the service will then expand to additional 50 cities in Europe and North America by 2030. By that time, Volkswagen hopes it will have mainstream automated vehicles to offer its customers, too.
 

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Good luck with that.

Dave
 

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VW has such a stellar software record 🤣😂🤣.
Actually, the hard-core safety-critical software in the ID.4 seems to work pretty well. The closest I'd come to complaining about it is that LKA seems to make some poor decisions sometimes and occasionally, a slightly-false start from “Poor-Man's Hold” mode seems to slam on the brakes.

My Volt was like this as well; there's nothing wrong with the fundamental Voltec software; all the f***-ups are in the UI.

I just assume that they have the grey-beard software engineers design the engine-management and related important software and they let the junior software engineers design the telematics and UI stuff and they don't train them, supervise them, or test their software adequately.
 

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Blue ProS RWD is in my garage! Only took 187 days.
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I'd beg to differ on the quality of LKA. Asphalt repairs leave a line in the asphalt that LKA thinks is a lane marker. LKA keeps on trying to kill me when I get on a local onramp. I love ACC, but the rest is a sham. Maybe in a decade.
 

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I'd beg to differ on the quality of LKA. Asphalt repairs leave a line in the asphalt that LKA thinks is a lane marker. LKA keeps on trying to kill me when I get on a local onramp. I love ACC, but the rest is a sham. Maybe in a decade.
If you're replying to my comment, I agree with your diagnosis: LKA seems to be reacting to minor details in unstriped pavement.

(Our alternative theory is that when a lane seems to get really wide (as in when the lane markers diverge at a toll plaza), LKA wants to keep you in the center of the ever-widening lane so it jerks you towards its theoretical center line, no matter how far off your proper course that center line moves.)

I also think I've seen moments where, when I've deliberately put the car “over the left lane marker” (to avoid construction or a truck to my right or what have you), LKA doesn't want you to RETURN to the lane afterwards; it jerks you back to the left as you try to cross back over the line.
 

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Id love to see VM just adopt openpilot! Its awesome and the best ADAS Ive ever used. I haven't used tesla autopilot, but many claim that its just as good, if not better in some ways.
Tesla's “Autopilot” doesn't have the right hardware behind it (e.g., RADAR) to be competent as a Level-4 or -5 automation and the chickens flying around Musk's vastly-overblown claims of its capability are coming home to roost now in the form of civil suits and possible criminal charges.

It's not inconceivable that TSLA gets sued right out of business over “Autopilot“.
 

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Honestly, I don't see anyone advertising or making claims past level 3. Mainly because at level 3, the liability starts to shift from driver to manufacture. I don't see any manufacture willing to take that on!
also, to be clear, tesla autopilot is level 2...if they get sued it will be for FSD bs. I still don't understand why people were willing to spend 7-12k for a feature that may never come!

Are any of you guys familiar with OpenPilot (george hotz company called comma.ai )? Its actually pretty amazing and opensource!
sorry..a bit off topic!
 

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Between Musk's compensation lawsuit, and Tesla's use of connotation-heavy words such as AUTOPILOT and FULL SELF DRIVING, I predict several major headwinds blowing against Tesla. One positive I recently saw is GM's announcement that they had worked on 11,000 Teslas at their service centers. That could be a major support factor for Tesla, if they embrace it and don't fight it.
 
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