It’s 2019, and we’re one step away from self-driving cars being a normal part of our day-to-day. And now there’s news that Honda has partnered up with GM to manufacture their first autonomous vehicle. What is it? When will it be released? Where’s it being made? Let’s answer all the questions you have about the latest Honda self-driving car rumors.

New Honda Self-Driving Car Rumors

Honda’s Ultimate Goal

According to the latest self-driving car rumor mill, Honda plans to invest $750 million into Cruise, GM’s self-driving department, to develop a brand-new autonomous vehicle. While no dates have been officially mentioned, Honda anticipates the project taking about 12 years to complete, and all manufacturing work is expected to be performed in Michigan.

One of the interesting things about the proposed project is that, unlike other self-driving cars that are manufactured on a very limited scale, Honda has expressed a desire to manufacture a high volume of cars, which indicates that they’re planning on marketing to a worldwide market. However, just because a global release has been mentioned, don’t assume you’ll be able to purchase the vehicle for yourself; it sounds as if the main purpose of the vehicle will be taking the place of human-driven Uber and Lyft vehicles.

This is not the first time Honda has expressed interest in building a fully automated vehicle. In 2014, Honda created a test track where they showcased the fully automated Honda Accord they’d developed. By combining an assortment of technologies, including many of the sensors and warning devices found in new Honda models, the engineers proved that a fully autonomous vehicle was not only able to navigate the streets without human assistance but also had the capability to cleverly avoided hitting moving obstacles, such as a cyclist.

Honda Plans on Developing a Work Truck

Honda also has plans on making another driverless vehicle: the 3E-D18 Concept. Honda hopes that the 3E-D18 will serve as a prototype for work trucks, as its built-in technology will lead to improved vehicle options in a number of fields, including:

  • Postal
  • Construction
  • Emergency
  • Agriculture

The vehicle was originally unveiled in 2018 and has already made an appearance at the 2019 CES. For the concept vehicle, Honda is using a firetruck design for the beta testing phase, which is currently taking place in Colorado. The additional testing and development that has been done on the vehicle during the past year allows it to easily handle rough terrain. Drone technology is used to pilot the vehicle, which is fitted with a reliable GPS unity, 4-wheel-drive abilities, and an extensive assortment of sensors. The concept Honda work truck is designed in such a way that attachments, including snow blades and robotic arms, can be easily installed; the agriculture industry hopes the vehicle will help with mowing, spraying, and transporting crops.

Challenges Ahead

The road Honda plans to travel on won’t be easy. Concerns have already been raised about who is at fault if a driverless vehicle gets into an accident. The road to completely automated and driverless vehicles is already paved with red tape, especially in California where a few new laws designed to restrict the use of automated cars have already been passed.

One law stipulates that any driverless car must pass a 30-day road test, and regular reports that provide detailed information about how, when, and why the vehicle was serviced will be required.

The second law will have a large impact on Honda’s plans since it directly impacts rideshare vehicles. If the law isn’t repealed, self-driving cars that don’t have a driver in them will not be allowed to take any passengers. This law will also eliminate the possibility of ever using the automated vehicles as shuttles and buses.

Despite the newly voted-on red tape in California that restricts the use of automated vehicles, the news that Honda and GM have joined forces is exciting. It will be interesting to see what kind of new technologies and self-driving vehicles are developed as a direct result of the alliance. We’ll wait in anticipation!


About Miami Valley Honda Dealers

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Sources & Photos:

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