Audi has announced it is currently developing a new high-resolution navigation map system in partnership with Dutch map and navigation supplier TomTom. Unlike current navigation systems, the next-gen Audi system will utilize topography, road sign and road layout information “to get the car to its destination with greater efficiency and convenience,” the automaker says.
The new map system will take into account elevation change and will also recognize curves, intersections, roundabouts and road signs. It will be especially important on future Audi vehicles with autonomous driving tech, such as the next-generation A8, which Audi says will “be a front-runner in piloted driving technology and the use of high-resolution maps.”
“The importance of high-resolution, three-dimensional maps will continue to grow in the future,” said head of development at Audi, Prof. Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg. “Here we primarily use the data in situations in which a precise prediction is crucial – e.g. data on expressway interchanges, road splits and entrance and exit ramps.”
Audi explains how the current predictive efficiency assistant in the new Q7 SUV can reduce fuel consumption by up to ten percent. By recognizing road signs, ascents, descents and other road characteristics before the driver does, the system can relay predictive information to the driver to help them prepare for the changes. Future Audi navigation systems will likely use an improved or revised version of this system to help further boost fuel economy gains.