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Compelling April Fool’s use case for autonomous driving: Lexus Lane Valet

Kicking off the annual April Fool’s press release season, Lexus announced a new semi-autonomous driving feature to be offered on all models: Lane Valet. This system would improve traffic flow by shunting slower moving vehicles from the left lane into the more appropriate right lane.

Lexus cheerfully said that utilizing radar and lane monitoring technology, in conjunction with 802.11p V2V wireless data protocol, this new semi-autonomous system would help Lexus drivers to communicate temporarily with the slower vehicle and do the slow driver the “courtesy” of safely moving their vehicle.

The Lexus vehicle’s radar and camera systems will scan the road to ensure safe operation while the V2V technology communicates with the misplaced driver’s vehicle. Once connected, Lane Valet will initiate a careful but prompt lane change.

The slow driver’s right turn signal will illuminate as the system confirms the adjacent lane is clear of other vehicles or obstructions. Lane Valet will then carefully deposit the unhurried driver into the right lane before disengaging, thus allowing others in the lane to continue moving at their previous pace.

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