Jaguar Land Rover reveals self-driving transport pod
Jaguar Land Rover, the UK’s largest automotive manufacturer, has revealed a new self-driving transport pod developed for cities and ready for an on-road pilot programme in the UK starting next year.
Known as Project Vector, the vehicle is an autonomous platform with a design focus on maximising interior space and offering flexible body configurations.
Jaguar Land Rover plans on offering the solution to private consumers and commercial fleets, collaborating with the city of Coventry and the West Midlands to unveil a driverless mobility service from late 2021.
Part of the company’s Destination Zero plan, Project Vector is Jaguar Land Rover’s first major step towards a vision of an autonomous, electric urban environment –the Brits are committed to achieving a future of “zero emissions, zero accidents and zero congestion”.
"Through this project, we are collaborating with the brightest minds in academia, supply chain and digital services, to create connected, integrated mobility systems – the fundamental building blocks for Destination Zero,” said Jaguar Land Rover CEO Sir Ralf Speth. “Project Vector is precisely the brave and innovative leap forward needed to deliver on our mission.”
At four metres in length, the vehicle concept packs ints battery and drivetrain components in the flat floor to free up more passenger space than any fossil-fuelled car of similar or even much larger size. Project Vector is about the size of your average Volkswagen Polo, and with a flexible platform, the interior can be configured for multi-use duty.
Project director Dr Tim Leverton said: “Future urban travel will be a composite of owned and shared vehicles, access to ride-hailing and on-demand services as well as public transport. Our vision shows the vehicle as a flexible part of the urban mobility network that can be adapted for different purposes.”
The motoring giant debuted its first all-electric vehicle in 2018 with sales of the zero-emissions Jaguar I-Pace surpassing 17 000 units last year which represents around 3% of the group’s total annual production.