While being driven, the car is capable of developing a 3D model of its environment and learning routes. When driving a particular journey a second time, an iPad on the dashboard informs the driver that it is capable of taking over and finishing the drive. The driver can then touch the screen and the car shifts to 'auto drive' mode. The driver can reclaim control of the car at any time by simply tapping the breaks.
The Oxford researchers are in the process of working on getting approval from the UK Department of Transportation to get permission to test drive it on the road. In the meantime, the team has developed a special testing environment with small roads and road markings.
The intent is to eventually mass-produce cars such as this and market them to consumers at low-cost to reduce driving stress. At the moment the system costs roughly 5000 pounds, but Professor Newman from the Oxford Department of Engineering hopes to eventually be able to lower the price to as low as 100 pounds."
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