Thursday, January 17, 2013

Do driverless cars need V2V communication?

Several car manufacturers work on driverless cars. They explore some different ways of doing it. Volvo is one of the most advanced exploring V2V technology. V2V is an acronym for vehicle-to-vehicle communication. It’s about using some dynamic vehicle to vehicle wireless communications to have cars get extra informations from neighbour cars or from sensors on the road itself.

But Do driverless cars need V2V communication?

To establish communication, you need to be at least 2 and share a common way to communicate. There are plenty of road stakeholders with which V2V communication will not be possible. Even if all vehicles shared the same way of communicating, the wild boar crossing the road in front of your car will not be able to communicate with your driverless car, at least not in a wireless way.

And as a matter of fact, today, most the google car and the soon to be released new Mercedes do not rely on V2V but only or mostly on their sensors.

If V2V is to have a future, a standard has to be established as soon as possible, so all vehicle from different manufacturers can communicate between themselves. Why not making it a “chapter” of AUTOSAR?

But my guess, is that by the time a common V2V protocol is established, most driverless cars will be able to drive completely autonomously, and V2V won’t bring anything to the driverless cars world. Sensors such as cameras, lidars and others will do the job anyway.

My feeling is that V2V for driverless cars is a dead end.

But in a constrained limited environment like a factory or on airport premises, this can be a good solution. V2V would be not between vehicles but rather between vehicles and specially equipped roads with wireless beacons (called V2I Vehicle-to-Infrastructure).


  1. There are already such vehicles used in the shop floor in OEM manufacturing plants.yes as you have mentioned , standards should be set up before V2V technology is implemented widely.

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