Europe is leading the world in self-driving innovation, a Brussels conference was told.
Research and innovation in the field of automated driving was high on the agenda of the 2018 EUCAR Conference this week.
A lively debate on the future of urban mobility, brought policy makers and authorities together with auto manufacturers, researchers and suppliers to discuss the opportunities and challenges of tomorrow’s mobility ecosystem.
Clearly, automated driving is one of the cutting-edge technologies that are reshaping our world. “The number of related European patent applications has grown 20 times faster than other technologies”, explained Roberta Romano-Götsch of the European Patent Office.
In fact, a new EPO study shows that Europe accounted for 37.2% of all patents related to self-driving vehicle technologies that were issued between 2011 and 2017; ahead of China (3%), Japan (13%) and the United States (33.7%).
Europe’s leadership was demonstrated by the L3Pilot flagship project at the conference, which presented various use cases of automation that have been developed by EUCAR’s members. Within one year, the project team developed automation technologies addressing a wide range of driving situations, including parking, overtaking on motorways and driving through urban intersections.
Looking ahead, the L3Pilot aims to pave the way for large-scale field tests with enhanced series-production cars on public roads: in 10 countries and across borders, with 100 cars and 1,000 users.
Keynote speaker and EUCAR Chairman Gerd Schuster, Senior Vice President Research, New Technologies and Innovations at BMW Group, emphasised the joint responsibility of all stakeholders.
“Together with our partners in industry, politics and society, we concentrate on the long-term aspects of mobility to serve society and remain competitive,” said Schuster while stressing that this does not only relate to the industry’s customers and employees, but to all Europeans.
Indeed, the success of European automotive innovation – now and in the future – depends on a constructive dialogue between public and private partners. And that is exactly what EUCAR aims to achieve in the long run.