Technology has once again expanded what is possible for mobility.

Introduction

As with the first vehicle revolution in the early 20th century, technology has once again expanded what is possible for mobility. Connected vehicles, the power of big data, shared mobility and vehicle electrification are changing the concept of the car. At the same time, steep declines in the cost of sensors, exponential growth in computing power and the rapid improvement of artificial intelligence (AI) systems have opened the door to advanced automated driving systems. At Toyota, we see the extraordinary potential for this technology.

Mobility

Vision

Automated driving is a natural next step in Toyota’s growth as a mobility company. It expands upon traditional automotive capabilities to help people get to where they want and need to be. And it offers the potential to benefit all of society by helping to eliminate traffic fatalities and injuries, reshape cities, reduce emissions and achieve our ultimate goal: mobility for all.

According to the World Bank, there are about 1.25 million worldwide traffic fatalities annually and far more traffic injuries. Automated driving technology could drastically reduce this number by helping to prevent crashes caused by human error. Our work on this technology follows from our commitment to safe driving, with the goal of developing a car that would never be responsible for causing a crash and that can avoid or mitigate many crashes caused by other vehicles or external factors on the road.

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Elements

FUNDAMENTALS OF AUTOMATED TECHNOLOGY

Driving automation operates thanks to the interaction of several systems that enable the vehicle to understand the driving environment, make intelligent decisions and navigate safely to a destination:

PERCEPTION
Perception combines information from the Localization and Mapping system with data from vehicle sensors – including cameras, LiDAR, RADAR, global positioning systems (GPS) and inertial navigation units (INU), among other inputs – to collect and interpret information about the vehicle’s current situation and its relationship to its environment.

PREDICTION
Prediction helps the vehicle imagine where other vehicles, pedestrians, bicycles, etc. are likely to be in the future.

PLANNING
Planning determines one or more safe courses of travel for the vehicle, including decisions such as which lane to travel, where to position the vehicle relative to other dynamic objects and how much space to afford obstacles.

Research & Development

Two related but distinct objectives drive Toyota’s research into autonomy: 1) improving driving safety and 2) improving access to and the convenience of mobility. We pursue two distinct concepts to achieve those goals, with the development of each built on similar perception, prediction and planning technology.
      

Toyota Guardian™ Active Safety

To more quickly realize the safety benefits of automated driving technology and to expand the ability of current drivers to experience the joy of driving, Toyota is developing an approach to active safety called Guardian. It aims to safely blend vehicle control between the driver and an AI system, sharing roles to take the best advantage of their skills. We call this blended envelope control.

Deployment

      

Mobility as a Service

Through its programs and in partnership with various companies in the mobility services space, Toyota plans to leverage a range of Mobility as a Service (MaaS) platforms to support and accelerate the development and deployment of automated driving technology.

MaaS provides a unique opportunity to deploy vehicles equipped with SAE Level 4 automated systems sooner.

Additionally, since their operating duty cycle is higher than personally owned vehicles, MaaS vehicles also present an opportunity to gather large quantities of experiential data to improve automated driving for all vehicles.

Toyota believes the deployment of highly automated vehicles to support MaaS can help lower costs per passenger mile, creating consumer demand and a virtuous cycle of affordable mobility, safety and convenience.

Toyota's Vision of Automated Driving

Download this PDF to learn more about Toyota's automated driving technology vision, strategy, and development.
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Voluntary Safety Self-Assessment Report