The New A8: Audi’s Addition to the Autonomous Car Market
The next generation Audi A8 is ready to become the first fully autonomous car when it becomes available to the public in 2017 – and the technology will be carried down into the new A7, A6 and Q8 when they are released later on. The fully autonomous function, revealed to be referred to as Traffic Jam Assist, will operate at up to 60km/h (about 37mph) in congested highway traffic and – unlike any system available today – fully control the car without the necessity for input or monitoring from the driver.
In addition to this, a separate Park Assist function will be included and will park the car automatically even when the driver is out of the car, as long as he controls it through an app on his smartphone. A number of car manufacturers offer similar capabilities – BMW offers a remote-parking function in non-U.S. 7-series, and Tesla just added the ability to its vehicles, including in America. The new A8 will follow the lead of the present A6, A7, and A8 by allowing drivers to take their hands off the wheel at highway speeds for extended periods of time before warning them to retake control.
The next Audi A8 will feature more aluminium in its production compared to its previous releases, as well as parts made out of magnesium and carbonfibre. However, it is still possible that it will add several kilos owing to the autonomous technology and a designed hybrid powertrain. The new 2017 Audi A8 is reported to be launched this summer, with sales beginning by the autumn. The German brand’s flagship A8 saloon is quite popular for its lightweight structure – but engineers acknowledge that addressing their customer demands is possible to lead to a small gain in kerbweight for the new version. The car’s bare metal construction is roughly 50kg heavier than the structure of the current A8.
The soon to be released Audi A8 will also have the Traffic Jam Pilot, which makes use of a central driver assistance controller, or zFAS, with NVIDIA hardware and software. This system will offer drivers the choice to turn over steering, throttle, and braking processes to the vehicle at speeds of up to 35 mph when particular conditions are satisfied, as per to Audi. At the center of the software are deep neural networks specifically designed for autonomous driving and determination of changing traffic control signs. The car first learned limited familiarity with the course and location with a human driver behind the wheel, through observation and the inclusions of training cameras – this engendered a correlation between the driver’s reactions and what the cameras themselves observed.