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Navya unveils autonomous taxi

The autonomous vehicle is capable of speeds of up to 55mph but will average closer to 30mph in urban areas

Autonom Cab was designed from the outset to be autonomous, like others in the range
Autonom Cab was designed from the outset to be autonomous, like others in the range

French technology company Navya has unveiled what it claims is the world’s first fully autonomous taxi vehicle.


The totally electric-powered Autonom Cab can carry up to six passengers and was designed from the outset to be autonomous so has no cockpit, steering wheel or pedals.


Capable of speeds up to 55mph, it will average closer to 30 mph as it travels in urban areas to conform with local speed limits, the company said.


“At Navya, we recognise that the status of individual cars is rapidly changing, especially among younger generations, many of whom don’t have their driver’s license and are less attached to the concept of owning a car,” said Christophe Sapet, CEO, Navya.


“What they want are mobility solutions available 24/7, ensuring their safety and well-being at a reduced cost. Autonom Cab is leading edge and will revolutionise both habits and technology, enabling a great many people to gain access to a brand-new mobility solution.”


Available as either a private or shared service, the cab places an emphasis on well-being and comfort and will offer a wide range of services benefiting from fully connected technology to restore freedom of mobility, according to Navya.


Through a dedicated smartphone application called Navya App, users can order a cab with a click. The vehicle starts up when the door is opened and closed. Navya claims it is also capable of pre-empting traffic jams so users can be on time despite unpredictable traffic.


Autonom Cab is equipped with sophisticated multi-sensor technology including 10 Lidar sensors, six cameras, four radars, two GNSS antennae and one inertial measurement unit (IMU). Navya said these sensors provide “at least” a triple redundancy across all functions, guaranteeing exceptional reliability. The on-board computer is capable of constantly merging data received by the sensor architecture.


Navya already has various partnership agreements with transport specialists, including Keolis in Europe and the US and with RAC in Australia. The company said these partnerships will enable it to roll out fleets of Autonoms that will operate on the open road in city centres.


The taxi service is expected to begin service in the second quarter of 2018.


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