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Audi's car parks itself, takes baby steps toward vehicle automation

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal | Jan. 11, 2013
Wouldn't it be nice if your car could valet itself? That's right--imagine driving up to a hotel or restaurant, getting out of your car, and pressing a button. Your car would roll up its windows and drive off to find an available parking spot and park itself. Then, when you needed your car again, you could just press another button and it would leave its parking space and drive to where you are.

Future piloted cars will still need the laser sensors, which means that both vehicles and infrastructure will need to . So even when these cars do come to market, garages and parking lots will have to support the feature for it to work. (I imagine you'll pull up to a restaurant and see a sign that says "Audi piloted parking works here," or something to that extent.)

Not just another self-driving car

Audi's proof-of-concept has a couple of things that make it stand out from other autonomous vehicles, such as Google's self-driving Prius and even Toyota's automated Lexus research car. First, it only uses technology that already exists and that has been implemented in cars that are on the road today.

Second, it doesn't need unsightly exposed lasers and sensors--the proof-of-concept car we saw looked like any regular Audi. Audi may not be ready to bring its piloted parking concept to market just yet, but, when it does, it will probably do so in style.

 

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