When it comes to the future of automobiles, Andy Whydell who is the Vice President of Systems Product Planning for the Active and Passive Safety Division at ZF Friedrichshafen AG puts it simply, that it will be a case of ‘CASE’, which means – Connected, Autonomous, Safe and Electric. He further adds that Autonomous and Electric are the two big directions in which the industry is headed and the developments in both these fields will take place simultaneously.
Our conversation began at CES 2019 where ZF was showcasing their next generation of supercomputers called as the ZF ProAI RoboThink which, as you can read here, massively changes how the future of automobiles is going to be like by providing access to other OEMs to tweak around the hardware and software in order to have the best usage of the service. That’s not it, ZF was also kind enough to let us be driven around in an Autonomous car that operated within a confined space and was powered by the same ProAI RoboThink.
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That’s not it, ZF also provided us with a closer look at the upcoming e.GO people mover that packs a lot of the features that one would call as ‘futuristic’ and is entering production later this year proving that the ‘future’ isn’t all that far away.
On being asked on how the definition of ‘safety’ has evolved over the years, Andy says, “previously, the safety measures were to protect the occupants of the car after the crash has taken place with things like airbags but now it is more about preventing the crash in the first place with the use of advanced sensors and intelligent systems on board the car. This not only makes the occupants of the vehicle safer but also the pedestrians on the road.”
We also asked how autonomous vehicles are going to make their way onto public roads, what makes a car smart and how does India be a part of this revolution taking place across the globe. Catch all of this and more in our conversation straight from CES 2019.