Nissan to put robo-taxis on road in 2018

Nissan Robot Taxi

In January 2017, both companies have collaborated to develop a new mobility based on an autonomous driving technology. Participants of the field test will be recruited from the Easy ride website from now until January 15, 2018.

"With "more freedom of mobility" as its concept, Easy Ride is envisioned as a service for anyone who wants to travel freely to their destination of choice in a robo-vehicle", Nissan said.

The test will take place between 5 and 8 March in the Minatomirai district of Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture.

Semi-autonomous driving features such as single-lane diving and auto parking are features that have already been incorporated by Nissan in its Japanese models of its Serena minivan, the X-Trail SUV and the new Leaf electric vehicle.

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The companies say they are aiming to combine the Nissan Intelligent Mobility vision through technological assets in autonomous driving, vehicle electrification and connected cars, with DeNA using its expertise in the internet and artificial intelligence to develope and operate driverless mobility services.

Called Easy Ride, the vehicles will work alongside a mobile app that enables users to hail one of the cars as and when they need one.

Nissan is planning to begin a pilot of self-driving Leaf electric vehicles that can be hailed using a smartphone app from next March. Nissan plan to have this service up and running in Yokohama by at least 2020, hoping for a completion of everything to pick-up and drop-off via mobile payment to having the option of taking the scenic route to your destination. With customers able to discover new local destinations through Easy Ride, the companies expect the service will also help energise cities and neighbourhoods.