Nissan will become the first Japanese company to sell a vehicle with self-driving car technology. Introduced on its Japanese-market Serena minivan, Nissan’s new ProPilot technology controls the car’s acceleration, braking and steering.
However, this mode is restricted to single-lane highway traffic, which essentially means it has the same capabilities as Tesla’s Autopilot and Mercedes-Benz’s Drive Pilot technologies. They all utilize lane-keep steering assist and adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go capability to keep the car in its lane, maintain a set speed or match the pace set by the vehicle ahead. The tech can also be used at speed or in stop-and-go traffic.
Tesla and Mercedes-Benz have already been selling their technologies in Japan, but Nissan is the first domestic automaker to offer it. In the United States, Nissan offers adaptive cruise control and an emergency automatic braking system on many of its cars, including the Sentra and Maxima. Nissan’s Infiniti luxury brand also offers these technologies, along with a lane-keeping system. Together, they can ease your driving load but can’t take over to the same extent as the Japanese-market Nissan Serena.
Look for more brands to offer such partial self-driving capabilities in the coming years as progress toward a fully self-driving car continues.