Nissan will bring real-world demonstrations of autonomous driving cars to the UK next month, with the on-road demonstrations taking place in London, enabling the vehicles and their passengers to cover a diverse city environment.
Passengers, including government officials and technical and safety experts, will be given the opportunity to experience and test the technology in a live urban environment in a modified Nissan Leaf. These will be the first demonstrations of Nissan’s autonomous drive technology on public roads in Europe, representing the next step in the company’s Intelligent Mobility blueprint for transforming how cars are driven, powered, and integrated into wider society. The news follows recent announcements that both the refreshed Qashqai and the new Leaf, both coming soon, will be equipped with autonomous drive technology to enable single lane autonomous driving on motorways. The announcement was made following a visit to the Nissan Technical Centre Europe (NTCE) in Cranfield, Bedfordshire, by Greg Clark, the UK Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. NTCE, the European R&D hub for Nissan, is developing autonomous drive technologies as well as new advanced fuel, energy and efficiency technologies, in collaboration with the Nissan Technical Centre and Advanced Technical Centre in Japan.
Opened in 1991, NTCE’s current projects include the development of vehicle-to-grid technology integration, electric battery advancements, and the new Qashqai model, which is scheduled to launch later this year. Versions of the new Qashqai will be available to customers with autonomous drive functionality for single-lane driving on the motorway. Last week, Nissan announced that a new version of its all-electric Leaf model will be coming soon, also equipped with the same autonomous drive technology. Clark was given a preview of the technology with a demonstration around the grounds of the technical center.