Volvo Plans To Introduce Self-Driving Cars in 5 Years

By valerie gentallan , Oct 04, 2016 05:53 AM EDT

Here's some good news for all car lovers out there: Volvo is taking on Google and Tesla in the self-driving automotive market. What's even more interesting is that while Ford plans on launching robot taxis, Volvo is targeting the individuals who are supposed to purchase it. Volvo is set to launch the self-driving car in 2021.

The self-driving car possesses an autopilot system, made possible by a hefty $10,000 premium added to the vehicle's cost. But you'll know where that extra money went, enthused company CEO Hakan Samuelsson during the World Mobility Leadership Forum, while detailing the car's capabilities.

For the uninitiated, self-driving cars still possess the same features of that of an ordinary car, but the driver, or now passenger, may choose to use the steering wheel or leave it on autopilot to get to where he's headed.

As Erick Coelingh, Senior Technical Leader for Safety and Driver Support Technologies puts it, "We put the person at the center, not the technology. It's about making sure the person is relaxed and enjoys the journey."

"To make a car even more premium, one of the most interesting things is a full autopilot," Samuelsson noted, adding that the gives its passengers 100 percent liberty to do what they want, without supervision, and just sit back, relax, or go watch a movie while on the road.

And when finally introduced to the market five years from now, clients will have the freedom to text without having to worry about accidents, and simply feel how it is to be a passenger for this self-driving car for the sheer fun of it.

What sets Volvo apart from its competitors like Ford and GM is that individuals who are expected to take advantage of this completely driver-independent car are direct buyers of premium cars, and not "mere passengers" of robot taxis. In other words, it's a car for car snobs.

A research and engineering team in Silicon Valley was tapped to develop the car system, and will enlist the help of 70 engineers. With furniture already being installed, the facility is set to be ready next week.

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