At High Gear we are keen to hail progress, especially when it involves the taxi industry. This is why we are always staying abreast of transport technology, with the idea of driverless cars fascinating us. While there are many rumours surrounding the self-sufficient vehicle it seems that Singapore are leading the race, launching a driverless taxi service throughout the city.
However, the car is not completely unmanned with a human backup driver and co-pilot on board.
Naming the business nuTonomy the launch is very much on the horizon, with the trail being a surprising success.
Beating extreme competition
With companies including Volvo, Google and Apply planning the launch of their autonomous cars nuTonomy claims to be the first to offer rides to the public, overtaking Uber who promises to roll out their service in Pittsburgh over the course of the next few weeks.
Using modified Renault Zoe and Mitsubishi i-MiEV electric cars nuTonomy’s trial observed safety, with researchers sitting in on the ride to ensure and monitor the car’s computers. Supported by a 50-person workforce nuTonomy expect to offer a full service, devoid of researchers, in the coming weeks, believing to have proven the product’s worth. With support from the government there really is nothing stopping this independent firm from stopping the likes of Uber and Google in their tracks, having been working on the technology since 2013.
An idea supported by local government
Pang Kin Keong, Singapore’s transport secretary, heads the government committee on autonomous driving. She days:
“We face constraints in land and manpower. We want to take advantage of self-driving technology to overcome such constraints, and in particular to introduce new mobility concepts which could bring about transformational improvements to public transport in Singapore.”
Let us now what you think, will the taxi driver soon become obsolete? Leave your comments below.