Although it’s an old Mercedes which benefits when traffic lights turn green in a current TV advert, it is Audi which is making in roads with vehicle to infrastructure technology.
Audi is rolling out technology that will allow its vehicles in the United States to communicate with traffic signals, allowing for a more stress-free ride in what it says is the car industry’s first commercial use of the nascent technology.
Audi of America said select Q7 crossover and A4 sedan models built after 1 June 1 will be equipped with its vehicle-to-infrastructure technology.
Known in the industry as “V-to-I,” the technology allows traffic signals and other infrastructure to exchange safety and other operational data wirelessly to vehicles over the cloud.
Eventual applications of the technology, which continues to be tested across the globe by carmakers and transportation agencies, will help mitigate crashes and reduce congestion on roads and highways.
“This is our foray into V-to-I,” said Pom Malhotra, general manager of Audi’s connected vehicles division. “This is designed not as a safety feature but a comfort and convenience feature.”
Audi’s system allows the vehicle to display a countdown before a red light turns to green. Knowing how much time one has before the light changes to green will relieve much of the anxiety of waiting, Malhotra said.
The technology can be used to reduce cross-over accidents at junctions if the users know how long they have to wait for the lights to change but it will not change the lights for them.