March 6, 2017—The Toyota Research Institute (TRI) displayed its 2.0 generation advanced safety research vehicle at the company's Prius Challenge event in Sonoma, Calif. The new test vehicle will be used to explore a full range of autonomous driving capabilities.
The system focuses heavily on machine vision and machine learning. The layered and overlapping LIDAR, radar and camera sensor array reduce the need to depend too heavily on high-definition maps—especially for near-term systems, which will be designed for use in areas where such maps don't yet exist.
The platform is the second generation of the advanced safety research vehicle revealed to the public by Toyota at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show. It is built on a current generation Lexus LS 600hL, which features a robust drive-by-wire interface. The 2.0 is designed to be a flexible, plug-and-play test platform that can be upgraded continuously and often.
"Basically, it is a smart vehicle designed to get smarter over time," Pratt said. "It will learn individual driver habits and abilities and will benefit from shared intelligence from other cars as data gathering, sharing and connectivity technologies advance. We believe Guardian can probably be deployed sooner and more widely than Chauffeur, providing high-level driver-assist features capable of helping mitigate collisions and save lives, sooner rather than later."