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Toyota promotes talking vehicle technology

17 April 2018

Toyota says it will start equipping models with technology to talk to other vehicles starting in 2021, as it tries to push safety communications forward.

These "talking cars" are equipped with dedicated short-range communication, or DSRC, systems that enable V2V and V2I (collectively referred to as V2X) transmissions.

The data is broadcast up to 10 times per second to nearby vehicles, which can identify risks and provide warnings to avoid imminent crashes, especially at intersections.

Toyota said communication can also be enabled in providing drivers with helpful information in real-time such as potential hazards, or slow or stopped vehicles ahead or signals, signs and road conditions that may be hard to see.

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According to a report by Reuters, the Japanese automaker said that the technology will make the vehicles "safer".

DSRC communications use 7 channels of the 5.9 GHz spectrum band allocated for Intelligent Transportation Systems.

Andrew Coetzee, Toyota's group vice president of product planning for North America, said short-range wireless communications chips will be put in Toyota and Lexus models in the United States in three years, although the goal is to adopt the technology across most its models by the mid-2020s. This means the technology does not require a cellular data network that would cause users to accumulate additional carrier charges.

DSRC, which is based on auto industry standards, allows Toyota vehicles to communicate with other automakers' vehicles.

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Toyota and Lexus have been selling vehicles equipped with DSRC in Japan since 2015. "Today, 92 percent of all Toyota and Lexus vehicles sold in the US have Toyota Safety Sense or Lexus Safety System + with AEB standard, and other automakers' deployment of this life-saving technology is accelerating, three years ahead of the 2022 industry target".

Past year the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimated that the regulation could eventually cost between US$135 and US$300 per new vehicle, or up to US$5 billion annually. Toyota says that as of March, more than 100,000 Toyota and Lexus models were on the road equipped with the vehicle-to-vehicle communication technology.

Toyota says that the DSRC tech has been tested through government-industry collaboration, and is already being used in some US regions.

Toyota is now encouraging all automakers to quickly commit to DSRC technologies in the U.S.to realize the full safety and traffic flow benefits of this technology.

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Toyota promotes talking vehicle technology