A the Prius Challenge, Toyota revealed it latest second generation self-driving tech in the Lexus LS 600hL. Toyota has more patents in the field of autonomous and self-driving vehicles than any other company.
The second generation of its advanced safety research vehicle is built on a c Lexus LS 600hL, that has a drive-by-wire interface. The news release states “The 2.0 is designed to be a flexible, plug-and-play test platform that can be upgraded continuously and often. Its technology stack will be used to develop both of the Toyota Research Institute’s (TRI) core research platforms Chauffeur and Guardian systems. ”
The smart TRI Lexus LS 600hl is designed to get smarter over time, learning driver habits/abilities and shared intelligence from other cars as data gathering, sharing and connectivity technologies advance.
Toyota expects that the Guardian platform can probably be deployed sooner and more widely than Chauffeur, providing high-level driver-assist features capable of helping mitigate collisions and save lives, sooner rather than later.
Chauffeur refers to the always deployed, fully autonomous system classified by SAE as unrestricted Level 5 autonomy and Level 4 restricted and geo-fenced operation.
Guardian is a high-level driver assist system, constantly monitoring the driving environment inside and outside the vehicle, ready to alert the driver of potential dangers and stepping in when needed to assist in crash avoidance.
The Prius Challenge, today in Sonoma, California allows entrepreneurs, technologists and Silicon Valley automotive enthusiasts to work with the Toyota Research Institute while having some fun at the Sonoma Raceway.