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April 12, 2019

ZF launches Level 2+ autonomous drive package

ZF has launched coPilot, an intelligent advanced driver assistance system (ADAS).

By Olly Wehring

ZF has launched coPilot, an intelligent advanced driver assistance system (ADAS).

Using AI and comprehensive sensors, vehicles can perform various automated driving functions, especially on freeways. The systems can be operated by voice command and is designed to recognise traffic conditions, sense vehicle handling and monitor the driver, helping to pre-empt hazardous situations through active control intervention.

It is powered by the supplier's ProAI central computer and the Nvidia Drive platform. It is designed for volume production and will be available from 2021.

Due to make its debut, at the Shanghai show, the Level 2+ autonomous system is targeted at passenger cars.

"Driving and safety functions surpass the performance of a regular Level 2 system for semi-automated driving," said Torsten Gollewski, head of autonomous mobility for ZF.

A demonstration vehicle can perform specific driving manoeuvres autonomously such as entering and leaving highways under appropriate conditions.

The system also combines an advanced cruise control with active steering assistance and lane keeping assist and can proactively change lanes, pass, and merge. It can analyse vehicle surroundings, and recognise pedestrians, oncoming traffic, and intersections.

Sensors and functions monitor the driver and can trigger warnings in the event of potentially dangerous situations.

MyRoute, a map function that recognises repeat routes, is included along with voice recognition for commands.

The demo vehicle has a front radar, four corner radars, and eight cameras. Two cameras are directed forwards and one backwards, two are integrated into each side mirror and one monitors the driver.

Highly automated driving at SAE Level 3 is not permitted in many countries so coPilot is based on Level 2 which requires the driver to continuously monitor traffic conditions. But the extra features are intended to work as a 'co-pilot' to support the driver.

"We are convinced that an extended Level 2+ system is very attractive for manufacturers: Due to its wide range of functions, it offers consumers significant added value in terms of safety and driving comfort – and at a competitive price," said Gollewski.

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