Nissan tests self-driving car for 1st time on public road in Japan

Nissan Motor Co. carried out a trial run of a prototype self-driving car on a public road in Tokyo on Saturday.

Nissan aims to commercialize its automated driving technology for use on public roads by 2020 ahead of industry rivals Toyota Motor Corp. and Honda Motor Co.

The prototype, based on Nissan’s Leaf electric vehicle, traveled about 17 kilometers in Tokyo’s Koto Ward in the day’s trial.

In the test run, shown to the media, the driver switched to a self-driving mode that uses cameras and sensors to monitor traffic lights and road signs.

The car showed unsteady moves briefly when running on sections where lane marks were unclear.

The driver returned to a manual driving mode at one point when the car entered a crowded road and became unable to smoothly change driving lanes automatically.

Major Japanese automakers are trying to develop self-driving vehicles toward the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.

Toyota aims to commercialize its self-driving technology for use on expressways as early as 2020. But the firm remains unclear when it will realize self-driving on other roads.Speech

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