May 19, 2015—On Monday, Nissan announced that it will have vehicles with autonomous driving technology road-ready by 2020, but whether or not people actually drive them on public roads will be up to government regulators, Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn said according to an Associated Press report.
Goshn added that, while Nissan sees autonomous vehicles as adding to the driving pleasure, a totally driverless car is not at the center of the automaker’s plans. The car Nissan foresees will assist or enhance driving, not remove the need for a driver entirely.
“That is the car of the future,” Ghosn said. “But the consumer is more conservative. That makes us cautious.”
Many automakers and even major tech companies, such as Google, are currently working on technology that allows cars to navigate without human assistance, and Nissan is well on its way to delivering that technology by 2020, Ghosn said.
The larger problem lies in gaining approval from regulators around the world. Ghosn believes autonomous driving is the future because market studies with consumers show that this is what they want, the report stated. Younger drivers especially want connectivity and zero, or very low, emissions.
To meet the zero emission need, Ghosn said that Nissan is banking on electric cars.