Self-Driving Cars: Where the production stands in 2020?

Source : Ville Kaisla

Five years ago, almost all manufacturers made it clear that fully autonomous drives from London to Leeds were a distant dream, but now we have cars that can crawl forward and crawl out of traffic jams. We predict how autonomous vehicles will be on the road by 2020 (see chart below), and we think there will be produced in the UK by 2025.

Proposed new manufacturers such as Apple and Dyson have pulled out, while some seem only interested in in-vehicle software, such as Google, Tesla, and BMW. 

In a 2018 petition to NHTSA(National Highway Traffic Safety Administration), General Motors said the company needed an exemption from 16 federal standards to drive on public roads. The reversal comes after the safety agency said in 2016 that it would legally redefine the definitions of ‘driverless’ and ‘autonomous’ to treat Google’s self-driving system as one. The change would have given developers of self-driving vehicles more leeway than they say they need to operate fully autonomous vehicles in US cities. 

The changes proposed by NHTSA touched on six of those standards and made it easier for GM to build cars without a steering wheel. 

Honda seems to have the best chance of making the leap into self-driving car technology, while GM and Ford invested heavily in or acquired self-driving car start-ups a few years ago. Toyota is one of the largest automakers in the United States and the largest automaker in the world and invested heavily in 2015 to catch up. It invested $1 billion in its research institute to develop robotics and AI technology.

But none of the automotive or IT industries has been able to achieve true Level 5 autonomy, in recent reports from the Institute for Advanced Research in the Automotive Industry (IARI) at the University of Michigan.

Tesla will stand out from other car companies as its leadership makes further advances in self-driving car technology and the development of autonomous driving systems. 


CEO Elon Musk predicted that Tesla will be able to drive itself by the end of 2017 without humans touching the steering wheel. Musk’s prediction for 2019, when Tesla vehicles will have full autonomy, was far less conservative than those of his colleagues. He explained the timetable and hinted that Teslas will be fully autonomous by the end of 2020. 

Ford announced during its profit, warning that it wants 100 autonomous vehicles on the road by the end of 2020. Speaking about his self-driving vehicle fleet, which is due to be launched in 2021, Hackett said it will be narrow, which Ford calls’ geo-fencing ‘because the problem is so complex. 

GM, which had previously promised to sell autonomous vehicles by 2019, has not announced updated forecasts. Nissan has admitted that it plans to produce a self-driving car by the end of the decade, but it is unclear whether that will happen, especially given Hackett’s caution in discussing the future of technology for self-driving cars in the US and Europe. 

To crack autonomy, Toyota is pursuing a two-pronged strategy that focuses on fully automated driving in its Toyota Prius and Toyota Camry, as well as autonomous vehicles in the future. 

Large companies are considering autonomous vehicles as a solution to reduce road accidents and deaths. A track called Guardian is designed to prevent accidents by using technologies such as automated emergency braking. 

Source : pixabay

However, there is still a long way to go before fully functional autonomous vehicles can be developed, but this is not dependent on the introduction of innovative technologies. The key to the development of fully autonomous driverless vehicles lies in the perception of the autonomous vehicle in people’s minds. 

It shows once again that by 2019, the leaders of major automotive companies are focused on branding their approach to self-driving technologies as safe – the first and seemingly forward-looking, as was the case in 2016. In late 2016, Honda announced it would become a co-owner of Waymo, the world’s largest self-driving car company, by integrating Waymo’s self-driving technologies into all of its vehicles. With the introduction of these technologies, significant progress could be made towards accident-free operation in 2018 and 2019. 

Honda’s goal is to have a car that can drive itself, at least on the highway, by 2020, but given recent developments, that goal may be too ambitious. ZDNet reported that Uber, the world’s largest driverless taxi service, recently moved the start date for its driverless taxi services from late 2019 to early 2020. 

Level 4 self-driving cars are manufactured on an assembly line in Orion, Michigan, capable of producing hundreds of thousands of vehicles a year. Based on the automaker’s technology and the company’s estimates, they are likely to hit the market by 2020, with Tesla and many other automakers taking the lead in this area. Level 4, or “self-driving” cars, are made at Ford Motor Co.’s factory in Dearborn, Mich., which, according to the Detroit Free Press, is the world’s largest auto manufacturing facility, producing hundreds, if not thousands, of vehicles each year. From the outside, Chevy Bolts look like normal retail models, but under the hood, 40% of their parts have been modified to enable autonomous driving, and they have deeply integrated into the driver – assistance technologies such as adaptive cruise control and automatic braking. 


Due to COVID-19 imposing a Worldwide Lockdown, the production facilities have come to halt which makes autonomous cars highly unlikely to go on roads in 2020. However, 2021 will be a very crucial year if things return back to normal, it will pave way for the coming decade. Autonomous driving will definitely reduce the number of accidents at a high level and will also make the old people who are fortunate enough to buy a driverless car, less dependent on their young ones. With the current situation, mass assembly production of autonomous vehicles seems a distant dream, not possible until 2025.


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