Jaguar Land Rover reveal their take on autonomous vehicles with new concept

Jaguar Land Rover has this month unveiled a new concept vehicle at the National Automotive Innovation Centre in Coventry. They are calling it Project Vector and it is part of the company’s "Destination Zero" journey which they say offers the JLR vision of an autonomous, electric, connected future for urban mobility.

Whilst most within the Jaguar Enthusiasts' Club remain extremely sceptical about he viability of autonomous vehicles, of course car manufacturers must be seen to be taking the future impact of the changing demands on transport seriously. In a press release, the JLR press office said;

"Jaguar Land Rover’s Destination Zero mission is an ambition to make societies safer and healthier, and the environment cleaner. Delivered through relentless innovation, the company’s focus is on achieving a future of zero emissions, zero accidents and zero congestion – through its products, services and across its facilities."

We, as historic vehicle enthusiasts preserving and enjoying Jaguar's heritage, just need to ensure that this doesn't just all mean "zero freedoms" for us and our heritage vehicles as well.

JLR explain that the Project Vector concept showcases an advanced, flexible, multi-use electric vehicle that is ‘autonomy-ready’.

At the reveal of the project, Jaguar Land Rover Chief Executive Officer, Prof Sir Ralf Speth, commented: “Jaguar Land Rover understands the trends shaping modern societies. Project Vector shows Jaguar Land Rover as a leader in innovation to make our societies safer and healthier, and the environment cleaner. Through this project, we are collaborating with the brightest minds in academia, supply chain and digital services, to create connected, integrated mobility systems – the fundamental building blocks for Destination Zero.”

“Project Vector is precisely the brave and innovative leap forward needed to deliver on our mission.”

The compact, flexible vehicle concept measures just four metres in length and is designed for the city, packaging all its battery and drivetrain components into a flat floor, to allow a variety of uses. The interior cabin space allows seating configurations for private, or shared use and even the opportunity for commercial applications, such as 'last mile' deliveries.

Dr. Tim Leverton, Project Director unveiled a rather radical vision of the future;

“Future urban travel will be a composite of owned and shared vehicles, access to ride hailing and on-demand services as well as public transport. Our vision shows the vehicle as a flexible part of the urban mobility network that can be adapted for different purposes.”

Jaguar Land Rover has the intention to collaborate with Coventry City Council and the West Midlands Combined Authority to plan a mobility service from late 2021, as a living laboratory for future mobility on the streets of Coventry.

Professor Dr Gero Kempf, Chief Engineer said: “It’s also a unique opportunity – a concept platform designed and engineered around urban centric use cases by a major car maker as a blank canvas, for developing tailored services and apps in the ecosystem of a smart city.”

Whilst the concepts are being developed, the Jaguar Enthusiasts' Club be supporting bodies like the FBHVC to ensure the freedoms of those who drive and enjoy historic Jaguars as a hobby and recreational activity are not curtailed whilst rolling innovations for solutions to essential every day transport.

Vector 1

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