Nissan Motor Co. has adopted Renesas’ automotive technology for the ProPILOT 2.0 system featured in the new Nissan Skyline unveiled in July.
The driver assistance system combines navigated highway driving with hands-off, single-lane driving capabilities, employing Renesas’ R-Car automotive system-on-chip (SoC) and RH850 automotive control microcontroller (MCU) to implement core functionality in the electronic control units (ECUs) that handle driving judgment and control.
Designed for on-ramp to off-ramp (ramp-to-ramp) highway driving, ProPILOT 2.0 engages with the vehicle’s navigation system to help maneuver the car according to a predefined route on designated roadways. For the first time, the system also enables hands-off driving while cruising in a single lane.
To enable these new functions, drivers must first set their destination in the navigation system, creating a predefined travel route.
Once the car enters the highway, the system’s navigated driving feature becomes available. Upon activation, it will assist the driver with traveling on a multi-lane highway—helping handle passing, lane diversions and lane exiting—until reaching the predefined highway exit.
The new ProPILOT also enables hands-off driving while cruising in a given lane. When the vehicle approaches a road divide, or when passing a slower vehicle is possible, the system judges the appropriate timing of branching off or passing, based on information from the navigation system and 360-degree sensing. The driver receives intuitive audio and visual guidance and is prompted to put both hands on the steering wheel and confirm the start of these operations with a switch.
A monitoring system in the cabin continually confirms that the driver’s attention is on the road when ProPILOT 2.0 is in use. If the driver fails to respond to an alert while driving, the system turns on the hazard lights and reduces the vehicle’s speed until coming to a stop. An SOS call service automatically establishes an audio connection to a dedicated call center operator for emergency assistance.
ProPILOT 2.0 is a standard feature for all HYBRID 2WD and 4WD grades.
To achieve this advanced capability, the Renesas R-Car SoC first creates detailed environment maps of the vehicle surroundings by combining information on nearby vehicles and other objects from the cameras and front radar with the high-precision 3D map data preloaded for navigation.
The SoC determines the vehicle’s own position from the map data and lane information and, based on this information, determines the vehicle’s action plan.
The RH850 MCU receives the resulting data and sends control commands to the ECUs such as the steering wheel, accelerator, brakes. Combining the R-Car SoC’s high-performance processing with the RH850’s real-time responsiveness and excellent reliability enables judgment and control operations to take place sequentially and accurately. This contributes substantially to the realization of Nissan’s ProPILOT 2.0 driver assistance system.