Feeds

Japanese PM holds on FOR DEAR LIFE in self-driving car

Shinzo Abe's selfie vid shows very nervous PM enduring rather smooth ride

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Nissan took one of its self-driving cars onto the congested streets of Tokyo for the first time last weekend, with a rather sceptical looking VIP (very important passenger) in tow.

Japanese PM Shinzo Abe took a brief spin in the ‘Autonomous Drive’ car on Saturday, as well as similar models from Toyota and Honda, ahead of the Tokyo Motor Show.

He told reporters afterwards “I really felt proud that Japanese technology is the world’s best,” according to AFP.

However, as this video shows, Abe didn’t look completely comfortable as the auto-pilot was switched on, his left hand clamped firmly to the inside passenger door handle throughout the brief trip.

Youtube Video

These cars have apparently been tested out hitherto on highways where there are no pedestrians and more predictable driving conditions, so it was a first for them on the mean streets of Tokyo.

Despite Abe’s leap of faith, Japan faces stiff competition globally in this emerging automotive technology market.

Google promised last year that its self-driving cars would be ready by 2017, three years before Nissan’s tentative launch date.

Crucially, laws in California and Nevada have already been passed to allow them on the roads, as long as there is also a driver at the wheel.

A Navigant Research report back in August claimed that by 2035, 100 million autonomous cars would be sold annually worldwide.

That may be, but it’s likely they’ll gain traction first in countries with relatively predictable driving conditions and risk-averse drivers.

So in APAC: Japan yes, China, Indonesia and Thailand no. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SECRET U.S. 'SPACE WARPLANE' set to return from SPY MISSION
Robot minishuttle X-37B returns after almost 2 years in orbit
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
You can crunch it all you like, but the answer is NOT always in the data
Hear that, 'data journalists'? Our analytics prof holds forth
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
Origins of SEXUAL INTERCOURSE fished out of SCOTTISH LAKE
Fossil find proves it first happened 385 million years ago
America's super-secret X-37B plane returns to Earth after nearly TWO YEARS aloft
674 days in space for US Air Force's mystery orbital vehicle
NASA eyeballs SOLAR HEAT BOMBS, MINI-TORNADOES and NANOFLARES on Sun
Astro boffins probe fiery star's hidden depths
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.