Autonomous Nissan LEAF Goes Out For A Test Drive – Video

6 months ago by Mark Kane 13

Fully Charged had chance to test drive the autonomous Nissan LEAF that recently was demonstrated in London.

Nissan LEAF’s autonomous drive demonstration event – London

The Japanese approach is to offer fully autonomous driving capability with ability to take control of the wheel at any time – for the joy of driving, or when situation will become extraordinary.

Fully Charged notes that the autonomous LEAF feels solid and safe.  We have to say after watching the video it is impressive how far Nissan has come with its system, and can’t wait to get our hands on it in the ‘next’ Nissan LEAF.

For now it’s just a prototype, with four lidars, 12 cameras, and many separate computers for each of sensor, which will need to be integrated in single unit at later stage. Otherwise 1.5 kW of power usage by the system would affect range too much.

“Our first ride in a fully autonomous car on public roads in the UK. Nissan very kindly arranged this experience, I’d particularly like to that Tetsuya Iijima, who is ‘not’ driving the car, he had been showing this vehicle to numerous journalists before we arrived but still showed great enthusiasm.”

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13 responses to "Autonomous Nissan LEAF Goes Out For A Test Drive – Video"

  1. Dave says:

    Who decides that 1.5 kW is “too much”? I’m sure they’ll bring that down, but even if they don’t it doesn’t seem like too much of a hit to me. A gen 2 Volt can go 53 miles, this would take it down to, what, 40? With nearly full autonomous driving? I’d take it.

    1. MikeM says:

      @Dave: Who decides that 1.5 kW is “too much”?

      Anyone who considers a drain of 6±1 or so miles on range every hour to be too much range lost.
      Also anyone with more tricks up his sleeve who knows he can refine the system to perform with a lower kW demand.
      At the moment though, it’s quite an impressive demo.

  2. silversod says:

    Just watched the fully charged video & I gotta say that’s amazing, I wasn’t really into auto pilot because I like to drive but I can see that in a rush hour commute scenario it would be very good.

    1. Brian says:

      Agreed. I like Nissan’s approach better than Tesla’s from what I see so far. The car is made to be driven first, with autopilot as an option. The Model 3, by contrast, is designed to taxi you around with the option to take over control if you like.

      When you are in control of the car, the layout of Nissan’s dash is much more user friendly.

  3. The real scoop in this video is that we are probably seeing the instrument cluster and infotainment screen of the 2018 leaf…

    1. Jason says:

      Yes, that’s what I think. And a pity, too. I like the Speedo above the instrument cluster, best I have ever used. Make it a customisable LCD where I can replace the trees with the SoC %, and it would be perfect. And replace the clock with the power Meyers Ala Leaf Spy.

      Then the lower screen becomes an LCD and has all the autonomous information.

      The central console annoys me because some of the basic information is removed, eg have a to line like Android to show mobile phone signal and battery, clock,etc. And bottom line to show AC, radio station, etc. Regardless of the main Navigation screen.

      Anyway, out seems a shame of they go back to what every other vehicle has and lose what makes the Leaf a little bit special.

  4. Alan says:

    I wonder how many rear ending’s this & others like it will prevent in the future.

    1. ffbj says:

      It would depend on the number of cars equipped with these capabilities.
      As that number goes up accidents come down. Theoretically it could be zero, if humans were not allowed to drive their own vehicles, or could be locked out if the car decides too.
      Sort of like the rise of intelligent machines in Dune. They just take over.

  5. midimal says:

    The real scoop in this video is that we are probably seeing the instrument cluster and infotainment screen of the 2018 leaf…

    Hey – that was also what I was thinking 🙂

  6. Brian says:

    1.5kW? That’s an awful lot of power. There is little doubt in my mind that Nissan will get this down in a production version.

  7. Warren says:

    Not as good as banning cars, but the next best thing for bicyclists.

    1. Ocean Railroader says:

      A lot of people do start selling off their cars when a new metro line is extended though a new neighborhood in LA.

  8. ffbj says:

    It’s the future of driving, and oddly enough will accelerate due humans inability to walk and chem gum at the same time.

    So one technology saves us from another, since distraction becomes less relevant to safety, as we place out trust in ai to make our driving decisions for us.
    The bottom line is money. Fewer deaths and horrific injuries, and secondarily less damage when there is an accident.
    I can even see in some countries where you get tax break, or more likely a tax penalty, if you don’t have these features on your car, also cheaper insurance.

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