Toyota will offer demonstration rides with its Level 4 automated-driving test vehicle on public roads in Tokyo, Japan, starting next summer.
The ‘P4 test vehicle’ as Toyota calls it, is based on the fifth-gen Lexus LS and has already been tested at a close-course test facility in Ottawa Lake, Michigan. Toyota will continue the development of the P4’s software on the public roads in Odaiba, Tokyo and around Toyota Research Institute’s Ann Arbor and Los Altos research offices.
The rides will be offered from July to September 2020, with Toyota demonstrating the P4’s “Chauffeur” SAE Level-4 capabilities. The P4 experience will take place in Tokyo’s Odaiba district, which features a complex environment of pedestrians, traffic, diverse road infrastructure and tall glass buildings.
The public will be invited to register their interest, and the company will select who will participate. The P4 test vehicle will also come with a safety driver sitting behind the wheel, in accordance with Japanese law.
“By challenging ourselves to successfully operate autonomously in Odaiba, we have set a high bar that requires us to rapidly expand the capabilities of our technology in a short amount of time,” said Toyota Research Institute CEO Gill Pratt. “To accomplish that, we are working closely with the Advanced R&D Division of Toyota Motor Corporation and Toyota Research Institute-Advanced Development (TRI-AD) based in Tokyo, who is responsible for bringing the P4’s automated driving software to the public.”
The P4 test vehicle was first unveiled at the 2019 CES and acts as the platform for the development of both the “Toyota Guardian” active safety features and the “Chauffeur” automated-driving technology.