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Renault Demonstrates Self-Driving Vehicles

by Kenny Hoeschen

Renault is showing off what it has achieved with its autonomous vehicle technology, knows as “PAMU” (Advanced Urban Mobility Platform). In this video, we see the PAMU test vehicle, a Renault Fluence Z.E. all-electric car, summoned by a driver as it leaves its designated parking space and picks her up on the roadside. After she’s finished with her travels, the vehicle navigates back to the parking space on its own where it is recharged automatically.

The project was designed with the development of a taxi pool in mind. Passengers reserve a car from the pool on a special website, entering their route, time and point of departure. On the day of your ride, you receive a text message telling you the car is waiting at the specified meeting point, with the necessary electric charge. You “check in” by waving your badge over a sensor in the windscreen. The car unlocks its doors and deactivates automatic mode to let you take over. The journey over, you drop the car off at the location of your choice, and it returns driverless to the taxi pool.

PAMU project manager François Chauveau explains: “Driving a car is generally a pleasure, but sometimes it’s not, like when you spend hours looking for a parking space or you have to park in an underground lot. This is exactly why restaurants have a valet service – at a price, of course! That’s where the idea comes from: why not simply an automatic driver? And in the same spirit, how about a car that picks up its driver rather than the other way round?”

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