This is not the first time Toyoda has expressed concern about the too rapid introduction of certain innovations. Earlier, he talked about the utopianism of a complete transition to pure electric cars, at least for Japan. (Which does not prevent the company from working on such a transport and filling for it.)
You cannot say that Toyota lags behind the main players in autopilot research at various levels. On the contrary, it has a huge scope of work being carried out in different countries: from unmanned test cars intended for ordinary roads, the serial Advanced complex, which began to be distributed among models, to the slow-speed Toyota e-Palette shuttles. Airlifted athletes during the Tokyo Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games.
But it was the incident with the latter that pushed the head of the auto giant Akio Toyoda to declare: "I do not think that in general there is really normal movement of unmanned vehicles on ordinary roads." It came after the e-Palette hit a visually impaired athlete on 26 August. True, the collision took place at a speed of about 1.5 km / h, so the person was not injured (the company apologized to him). However, Toyota has investigated the case.
were originally tested at the training ground before being launched in the Olympic village for the needs of athletes, coaches and other team members.
The incident took place at an intersection. The shuttle turned right and, finding a man nearby, stopped. Then the safety operator in the car gave the command to continue driving. But the pedestrian decided to cross the road. The computer detected this, the operator also reacted. Both the driver and the electronics started braking together, but failed to stop completely before the collision. The shuttle operations were temporarily suspended, and a few days later resumed with increased security measures.
The company added a second backup driver to the shuttle (such an operator does not drive, but controls the situation with his hand on the emergency stop button). Also, the volume of the warning sound has been increased, designed to protect pedestrians when the drone approaches. And at intersections, the number of guides watching cars and pedestrians has been increased. “There is pressure on automakers to be the first to release Level 5 cars, but I have already said that we should not jump on such a bandwagon,” concluded Akio Toyoda.