|A rendered image of Hyundai Motor's IONIQ 5, equipped with the Level 4 autonomous driving system / Courtesy of Hyundai Motor|
By Baek Byung-yeul
Hyundai Motor will test-operate its self-driving service, "RoboRide," as a pilot program in a district for self-driving cars located in downtown Seoul, starting from the first half of 2022, the carmaker said Thursday.
What the company calls "RoboRide" is Hyundai Motor's new mobility service that is operated by Level 4 autonomous driving technology. Level 4 automation for vehicles entails fully self-driving cars that do not require human drivers.
The company presented how far the development of Level 4 autonomous driving technology has come as well as how it will test-operate it in Korea at the 2021 Seoul Mobility Show, held at the KINTEX convention center in Goyang, northwest of Seoul.
"Hyundai Motor is developing self-driving technology that allows everyone to move safely and comfortably based on our philosophy of 'universal safety' and 'selective convenience,'" Jang Woong-jun, the head of Hyundai's autonomous driving center, said, adding that the company will unveil more details about the test-operating process later.
For the test-operation process, Hyundai Motor will use its electric car, IONIQ 5. The company also unveiled a video clip with its hydrogen fuel cell electric car, Nexo, driving around a city via Level 4 self-driving technology, at the motor show.
Jang added that the company, "Will continue to develop autonomous driving technologies that can move safely and conveniently in a more complex on-road driving environment."
To increase the convenience of charging electric cars, Hyundai Motor said that it will expand the number of EV charging stations, called E-pit, across the country. It plans to install additional E-pit stations in Jeju, Seoul Station, Gwangmyeong and 12 highway rest areas.