Hyundai Motor Group states that it intends to spend as much as $35 billion over the coming five years in its quest to provide self-driving automobiles to South Korea. The country wants to be on the path to becoming the first in the world to have fleets of autonomous vehicles. Announced on Tuesday in Seoul, the South Korean auto manufacturer will be focusing on technology such as independent, connected, and electric cars that can benefit from ride-sharing networks that already exist within the country.
Making Huge Strides
Hyundai’s announcement comes on the heels of its statement last month that it entered into a joint venture with autonomous vehicle tech company Aptiv. The South Korean government is interested in becoming the first nation in the world to field a fleet of self-driving vehicles. President of South Korea Moon Jae-In mentioned that the country could take the lead, not only in self-driving cars, but also in battery, semiconductor, and information technology markets.
How Far Have They Gotten?
The Society of Automotive Engineers delineates the technology of self-driving cars into five levels. Between levels on to three, a driver still has to be able to get control of the vehicle. Level four cars can drive for themselves in almost any situation, and level five is a fully autonomous vehicle. Hyundai intends to launch a complete fleet of level four autonomous cars by 2024 and make them affordable to the average consumer by 2027.
However, all is not well in South Korea when it comes to picking up the slack. Recent reports note that South Korea lags behind the rest of the world in producing logic chips and artificial intelligence. The lack of this technology may seriously hamper President Moon’s vision for the future. At any rate, Hyundai is forging forward with their aim to provide the vehicles to South Korea. The local administration needs to step up if they intend to utilize those cars to their fullest potential.