Just hours after its acquisition of auto-visual company Mobileye was completed, Intel announced that it will build a fleet of Level 4, fully self-driving vehicles for testing in the US, Israel, and Europe.
The first vehicles will hit the road starting this year, as the fleet eventually scales to more than 100 units. The cars will be Level 4 autonomous, meaning that they will be capable of handling most driving situations themselves, whereas Level 5 is largely theoretical and covers complete automation in any condition.
Intel announced plans to acquire Israel-based Mobileye for US$ 15.3 billion back in March, a deal which just closed last Tuesday.
“Building cars and testing them in real-world conditions provides immediate feedback and will accelerate delivery of technologies and solutions for highly and fully autonomous vehicles,” said Amnon Shashua, soon-to-be senior vice president of Intel Corporation and future CEO/CTO of Mobileye.
“Geographic diversity is very important as different regions have very diverse driving styles as well as different road conditions and signage. Our goal is to develop autonomous vehicle technology that can be deployed anywhere, which means we need to test and train the vehicles in varying locations,” Shashua added.
To build these test vehicles, Intel’s new entity will combine proprietary capabilities from Mobileye including computer vision, sensing, fusion, mapping and driving policy along with Intel’s open compute platforms and expertise in data center and 5G communication technologies to deliver a complete “car-to-cloud” system.
The fleet will include multiple car brands and vehicle types in order to demonstrate the technology’s “agnostic nature”.