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January 5, 2018

Hyundai/Aurora to develop Level-4 autonomous vehicles

Hyundai and Aurora have unveiled a partnership to bring self-driving Hyundai vehicles to market by 2021.

Hyundai and Aurora have unveiled a partnership to bring self-driving Hyundai vehicles to market by 2021.

The partnership will incorporate Aurora’s self-driving technology into Hyundai vehicles starting with models custom-developed and launched in test programmes and pilot cities. During the longer term, Hyundai and Aurora will work to commercialise self-driving vehicles worldwide.

To start, the focus will be on development of hardware and software for automated and autonomous driving and the back-end data services required for Level 4 automation. Level 4 autonomous vehicles defined by SAE can operate without human input or oversight under select conditions. The goal of the partnership is to deploy autonomous driving quickly, broadly and safely.

“We know the future of transportation is autonomous and autonomous driving technology needs to be proven in the real-world to accelerate deployment in a safe and scalable manner,” said Hyundai vice chairman, Woong Chul Yang.

“Combining our advanced vehicle technology that embeds the latest safety features with Aurora’s leading suite of Level 4 autonomous technology, will advance this revolution in mobility with Hyundai in a leadership position.”

Hyundai and Aurora share a common vision of improving safety and mobility on the world’s roads and together bring the skills and experience required to successfully introduce the technology at scale.

“Aurora is excited to partner with Hyundai Motor to make the social benefits of self-driving available globally,” said Aurora CEO, Chris Urmson.

“This partnership combines Hyundai’s strengths in vehicle design, safety and manufacturing with Aurora’s expertise in self-driving technologies to make a positive difference in the world.”

Hyundai Motor’s partnership with Aurora is part of the company’s ongoing efforts towards realising fully autonomous driving. Hyundai first began testing autonomous vehicles on the US public roads in 2015, having been granted a licence by the state of Nevada.

Last year at 2017’s CES, Hyundai advanced its trials in urban environments, demonstrating self-driving technologies to the public with its autonomous Ioniq models.

Hyundai’s latest new-generation fuel-cell vehicle, which will make its official global debut at CES 2018 next week, will become the first model to be used in the test processes starting this year.

The fuel-cell powertrain will offer a platform to implement autonomous driving technologies, which requires a large amount of power to support the large amount of data communication as well as the operation of hardware such as sensors.

Hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicles will be able to provide a stable electric power supply without concerns about driving range.

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