Audi has been at the forefront of autonomous vehicle development for years, evidenced by the recent test of the A7 Piloted Driving Concept, which successfully took journalists from the San Francisco Bay Area to CES 2015 in Las Vegas in 100-mile autonomous highway stints. Before the feat, Audi said the tech found in their self-driving A7s was almost production ready and according to Autoweek, it could debut on the next-generation A8.
The next A8 sedan will be able to drive itself autonomously up to 37 mph. Audi says the car will also be able to handle “all aspects of driving” and will be capable of navigating traffic, finding a parking spot on its own and parking itself. It might sound like wishful thinking, but Audi technical chief Ulrich Hackenberg says the technology will be ready in time for the A8s European launch, slated for 2016. Audi won’t bring the tech to America until 2017, when the A8 will debut as a 2018 model.
Following the debut of the technology in the A8, Audi will add additional features. The tech will be limited to 37 mph initially, however highway driving and other aspects will also be accounted for in the future. Autonomous cars are only legal in California, Florida and Nevada, so U.S. laws will have to change before Audi can launch the system on a larger scale.