Honda has left Tesla to bite the dust with its first-ever level 3 autonomous car to be launched in a commercial market. Last year the company received approval for a type destination level 3 autonomous self-driving vehicle in Japan. This approval enabled the company to produce and sell vehicles with self-driving capabilities in Japan so Honda took this opportunity to the heart and within few months the company has launched Honda Legend Hybrid EX a luxury sedan with level 3 autonomous which is also the world’s first level 3 autonomous car.
So, what is a level 3 autonomous?
By definition by SAE, a level 3 autonomous system is a self-driving condition in which the driver need not to fully monitor the system under certain driving circumstances but should be present to take over the control whenever the system warns.
Honda calls this a level 3 autonomous system or the advanced driver assistance system as Honda’s Sensing Elite. This system gives the Honda Legend the ability to drive itself and even overtake cars with driver’s consent, not even that the car can also work fine in a traffic jam condition by making use of various sensors to pinpoint its location with respect to its surroundings. It also uses high-end 3D mapping for bumper-to-bumper congested traffic situations.
Although, how much the system looks pleasing but driver’s monitoring is still an important factor to keep in mind and for the same reason a camera is installed to keep an eye on the condition of the driver, and when its time to hand over the controls back to the driver an orange light blinks all over the interior to get the attention of the driver, however, if still, the driver is unable to respond the system will use a combination of hazard lights and horn to pull over the vehicle to either side of the road.
Honda Legend’s level 3 autonomous has been tested at every outcome possible to be thought of and has even simulated around 10 million driving situations and has been tested for about 1.3 million kilometres, but even after such harsh testing, the car is only limited in its home country Japan and that too of limited sale of 100 units.