In addition to driving on roads, the car will also be able to park itself, said Coelingh.
The driver can use a mobile application to activate the automated parking and can then walk away. The car will use sensors to find an empty spot and combine autonomous driving and auto braking to make it possible to interact safely with other cars and pedestrians, according to Volvo. The procedure can be reversed when the driver picks up the car.
Automated parking will only be available in certain areas though. Vehicle 2 Infrastructure technology, which comprise transmitters in the road infrastructure, will inform the driver when the service is available.
The project will start in 2014 and will combine technology development with customer research. The focus will be on infrastructure requirements for autonomous driving, research into consumer's confidence in such vehicles and on how autonomous vehicles can bring societal and economic benefits by improving traffic efficiency and road safety.
Cars that drive themselves are also being tested by Google, Mercedes and other companies. Florida and California have permitted testing of self-driving vehicles. And the U.K. announced in July it would start testing autonomous cars on the road by the end of the year.
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