BMW has announced that in 2021 a new advanced self-driving model will allow drivers to fall asleep at the wheel! According to the brand, future BMWs will not require drivers to even touch the wheel in only four years time!
This will be made possible by the advanced new "iNext" model in 2021 - a fully autonomous car that doesn't even require a driver's license by 2030.
A 19-page report published by the brand offers new insight into its research and development program for autonomous cars, and the announcement that the iNext driver assistant service will allow drivers to go to sleep at the wheel is quite a shocker.
The manufacturer says that it will offer "Level 3" automation in 2021, which will allow drivers to "perform secondary in-vehicle activities for longer periods of time". However, drivers must be able to take over driving duties in a matter of seconds if there is an unexpected scenario that the car cannot navigate.
iNext will then also offer "Level 4" automation from 2021, described as "fully automated driving in urban traffic" so that the driver can "sleep during long distance journeys if necessary". This means that drivers will have a far longer notice before having to take control of the vehicle.
The highest aim of automation, "Level 5", will never require drivers to take control of the wheel. This means drivers do not require fitness or a driver's license to use the vehicle. This technology is likely to be offered between 2020 and 2030.
BMW does admit that there is a lot of work to be done before self-driving cars can become commonplace.
BMW has already mapped out plans to handle dangerous circumstances, in the unlikely event that the driver should have a dilemma. This includes detecting possible "not passable" space, automatic braking at full power, evasive manoeuvres and methods of making sure that, if a collision is unavoidable, the damage is minimal.
This is an exciting announcement by BMW that means self-driving cars will be possible with complete control in just four years!