A two-week trial run could lead to bigger things in the future

Another day, another development in the race to put autonomous driving technology on the road. The latest bit of news comes from Nissan, which announced plans to roll out an autonomous ride-sharing pilot program with tech partner DeNA. The public test will take place in the Minatomirai district in Yokohama, Japan.

The program, called Easy Ride, is envisioned as a service that works similarly with the autonomous ride sharing programs Uber and Waymo are already doing

The program, called Easy Ride, is envisioned as a service that works similarly with the autonomous ride sharing programs Uber and Waymo are already doing. But before diving into deep waters, Nissan and DeNA will take things slowly, beginning with a two-week test run that will take place between March 5 and 18, 2018. Modified Nissan Leaf electric cars will be used in the program. Nissan and DeNA have also created a dedicated website where volunteers can sign up to be part of the program.

Eventually, Nissan envisions the Easy Ride program to become a full-fledged service that will supplement the current transportation services we have today. Robo-Taxis will sit at the forefront of this program, all of which can be used by the general public. It’s not clear if Nissan plans to build unique models for these autonomous cars in the future, but given that the company is using modified Leafs for this trial run, it’s likely that the electric car will get the first shot at bringing the Easy Ride program to life.

References

Nissan Leaf

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