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Honda testing Level 4 autonomous driving technology

Honda Motor is testing its highly automated driving technology for practical use as a new means of transportation.

The company is trying to develop level 4 automation technology that will enable vehicles to perform autonomous driving functions under certain conditions, such as in limited locations.

Honda got its verification project going at full speed on a test course north of Tokyo in Tochigi Prefecture in October.

The experiment aims to perfect a technology to create high-precision maps based on digitized street information such as traffic lights and intersections. Such a system is necessary so that vehicles with Level 4 technology can drive safely.

Honda plans to test the technology on public roads early next year. A ride-sharing service with vehicles without a driver’s seat is also to be introduced in the mid-2020s. Honda is developing such vehicles together with General Motors.

A senior Honda official said the company aims to solve social challenges and rejuvenate local communities through its safe, environmentally friendly and exciting mobility service.

Nissan Motor and other companies are also testing their autonomous driving technologies. Toyota Motor is developing a system for controlling multiple driverless vehicles at the same time.