The six levels of classification of autonomous cars

The six levels of classification of autonomous cars

  • The Society of Automotive Engineers, SAE for its acronym in English, classifies vehicles in 6 levels of autonomy.
  • The levels start from zero autonomy (level 0) to the future of autonomous cars where they do not need any human intervention (level 5).
  • Currently there are only cars up to level 4.

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 Ford has announced that in 2021 it will launch its first autonomous car. FORD

The automobile companies begin to introduce autonomous functions in their cars, freeing the driver of certain actions at the wheel. Currently in the market you can find cars that park alone or that circulate in an almost autonomous way by highway. The systems warn the driver of unintended lane departures even when there are no lines painted. Advances in the future of autonomous driving, but for now, driving without a driver is still far away.

The SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) is the automobile standardization body that decided to divide the autonomous driving capacity of a vehicle into 6 levels, from the most basic systems to 100% autonomous driving. And according to these levels you can measure how advanced the technology of autonomous cars is.

Levels

  • Level 0 : the car does not have any automated system that allows it to take control, it can only have systems that emit some warning.
  • Level 1 : at this level cars include systems such as cruise control or technology to keep the car in the lane.
  • Level 2 : here the vehicle can be called semi-autonomous . The driver must remain on alert in case he has to take control of the car at some point because the car may not respond properly and it is mandatory that the system be deactivated when the driver takes control. An example of a semi-autonomous car is the Mercedes-Benz E-Class. It has been on sale since March 2016 and stands out for the so-called Drive Pilot that is able to avoid the exit of the road without the need for lane lines. Never a mass-produced car was able to be guided on a road without the help of the lane lines until this Mercedes-Benz came out.

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  • Level 3 : vehicles can drive autonomously in controlled environments such as highways. At this level the Autopilot system of Tesla could be found in the Model S. It is a system that is disabled by default in the car and that must be connected voluntarily by the driver. Perform constant checks to ensure that the driver remains attentive and with his hands on the steering wheel warning by sound and light alerts if he does not detect his hands on it. In this video you can see how the Autopilot system works in a Model S.

 

  • Level 4 : the autonomous cars can circulate without supervision of the driver in limited areas where the car has enough information to not depend on the driver. Some very powerful companies have already begun to make their first serious tests to see what the real operation of autonomous cars is. Google is an example of autonomous driving; since May 2012, he has a license to test autonomous cars in some states of the United States. Volvo and Uber have also partnered to create the world’s first fleet of autonomous taxis. Ford recently announced that its first autonomous car will arrive in 2012. And other brands such as BMW, Citroen or Audi have also been launched to tests with autonomous cars.

 

  • Level 5 : autonomous driving at this level is complete. You can drive on any road or city as long as it is legal autonomous driving . Thanks to technology, the car can react to any unforeseen event. And not only automotive manufacturers are interested in creating autonomous cars, other technology companies also investigate the issue. For example, Microsoft is designing applications that can be part of these vehicles. The Chinese brand Baidu already tests its car, while Apple could be behind a project of autonomous vehicle that, at the moment, offers more rumors than realities.