Vehicle-to-Vehicle and Vehicle-to-Infrastructure communications technology has the potential to save a significant number of lives but the roll out of the technology has been relatively slow.
Toyota and Lexus are aiming to change that by announcing plans to incorporate the technology on vehicles sold in the United States starting in 2021. The models will come equipped with a Dedicated Short-Range Communications (DSRC) system that enables them to share vehicle information – such as speed and location – with other vehicles and pieces of infrastructure.The real-time information can provide drivers warnings about potential hazards such as icy conditions, traffic jams and accidents. This promises to be incredibly helpful as drivers can be warned about potential issues even before they see them.Technology Doesn’t Rely On A Cellular ConnectionToyota says their DSRC system will use seven channels of the 5.9 GHz spectrum band that has been allocated for Intelligent Transportation Systems. This enables the vehicles to eschew cellular data charges and since the technology is based on industry standards, Toyota and Lexus models will be able to communicate with vehicles produced by other automakers.In a statement, Toyota Motor North America CEO Jim Lentz said “By allowing vehicles’ intelligent systems to collaborate more broadly and effectively through DSRC technology, we can help drivers realize a future with zero fatalities from crashes, better traffic flow and less congestion.” He went on to say “We believe that greater DSRC adoption by all automakers will not only help drivers get to their destinations more safely and efficiently, but also help lay the foundation for future connected and automated driving systems.”V2V and V2I Technology Will Eventually Come To Most ModelsWhile the first models with the technology are slated to arrive in 2021, Toyota and Lexus expect DSRC systems will be available “across most of its lineup by the mid-2020s.” Toyota says the roll out mimics their push to have automatic emergency braking systems equipped on most of their vehicles sold in the United States. After nearly three years the decision was first announced, the automatic braking technology is found on 92 percent of all new Toyota and Lexus vehicles sold in America.