Volvo’s ‘Drive Me’ project has kicked off in Gothenburg, Sweden with the company producing its first autonomous XC90 at its special manufacturing facility.
The automaker says Drive Me is the “world’s most ambitious and advanced public autonomous driving experiment” and will see a selection of families throughout Sweden’s second-largest city handed the keys to self-driving XC90 models.
Cars from the Drive Me project will adopt Volvo’s most advanced autonomous technologies, extending on the capabilities of the Pilot Assist system it already offers to the public. As such, the cars will have hands-off and feet-off capability in special autonomous driving zones around the city and collect feedback and inputs from customers to help Volvo further improve its systems.
This is similar to what Tesla does with Autopilot by collecting data from its customers about the self-driving software.
According to senior technical leader active safety at Volvo Cars, Erik Coelingh, “This is an important milestone for the Drive Me project. Customers look at their cars differently than us engineers, so we are looking forward to learn how they use these cars in their daily lives and what feedback they will give us.”
Next year, Volvo’s Drive Me project will extend to the streets of London and in the next few years, may also hit select Chinese cities.