- The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) on Tuesday issued a notice of proposed rule making that would speed the implementation of vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) technology within all new light vehicles, according to a recent press release.
- The proposed rulemaking, open to comments for the next 90 days, would significantly reduce the likelihood of accidents by standardizing the use of non-line-of-sight technology that could alert fellow drivers to sudden braking or unseen intersection hazards.
- Although the proposed rule only applies to passenger vehicles, the DOT stated they were continuing conversations with medium- and heavy-duty manufacturers on the benefits of V2V technology. The technology, while not necessary for self-driving cars, is highly complementary to vehicle automation.
The proposed rule, while intended more for safety than self-driving technology, pushes widespread adoption of self-driving technology closer to reality.
Skeptics of self-driving technology argue human-drivers will render the automation equally or more unsafe, and for self-driving cars to become commonplace new infrastructure (like an automated-vehicle only highway) would have to be built. However, V2V technology can help prevent even human-driven accidents by alerting drivers and vehicles of unsafe behavior ahead (think of it as a text alert popping up on the dashboard).
Automakers are widely believed to be at the finish line of implementing V2V and IoT integration. While CD players abounded in days past, cars without Bluetooth accessibility are a rarity, nowadays. Connected software is becoming so important to the automotive supply chain that BlackBerry is now a Tier1 supplier for Ford.
Various companies are shooting for 2020 to commercialize the self-driving vehicle, with the proposed rule now in place and supported by the auto industry, automotive supply chains may begin to shift accordingly. All other supply chains should look to a similar timeline for further last-mile and short-haul optimization.