Volvo Cars’ connected car program delivers pioneering vision of safety and convenience
• Volvo Cars is exploring the potential safety, convenience and societal benefits of the connected car
• A pilot fleet of 1,000 cars will run on Swedish and Norwegian roads this year
• Reveals vision of how Volvo Cars can lead in making the connected car a positive social force
• Sharing anonymized car data will save lives, time and taxpayers money
Volvo Cars presents the next step in the future of connected cars at the world’s largest mobile and technology exhibition, Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona (March 2-5).
“Imagine a world where road status data collected by cars is shared with other road users and with local authorities through a connected car cloud such as the Volvo Cloud: A world where the benefits of anonymized data-sharing support convenience and life-saving services while helping to contribute to a better society. Volvo Cars is working on realising such a future scenario,” said Klas Bendrik, Vice President and Group CIO at Volvo Cars Group.
Volvo Cars is currently investigating a whole range of connected car services that could be provided thanks to available in-car data and the Volvo Cloud. Smart cities could improve traffic flow management by optimizing traffic lights and speed limits and by offering re-routing suggestions based on real-time traffic jam alerts. Real-time warnings of dangerous weather and emergency road conditions or of emergency braking by other drivers could be provided. In the future, smart cities could even use connected street-lights to illuminate slippery road-sections in another colour when detected by a connected car to alert other road users to dangerous road conditions.
Road Status technology has been developed over many years at Volvo Cars and is currently being piloted in Sweden and Norway with a fleet that will extend to 1,000 cars.
“If a Volvo car detects that it is slippery on a certain stretch of road, for example, it can make other connected cars aware of this via the Volvo Cloud so they are forewarned. Such connected car services could deliver both personal and societal benefits by reducing the potential for accidents and lowering the cost of road maintenance by making winter road maintenance more efficient,” said Klas Bendrik, adding “Car makers have the potential to deliver real benefits to society by democratizing anonymized car data. This is something that Volvo Cars feels very strongly about.”
It is another step forward on an exciting journey made possible by the evolution of the connected car in a connected society. In the future it will be possible to connect such innovative cloud-based technology with traffic management ecosystems in different countries in standardized forms and maximize the sharing of real-time traffic information data – not only with other cars but eventually with wider society.
Model Overview: 2015.5 Volvo V60 Cross Country
Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price
V60 T5 AWD Cross Country: $41,000
V60 T5 AWD Cross Country Platinum: $44,650
Volvo’s lineup continues to expand with the introduction of the new V60 Cross Country. This sporty and dynamic luxury wagon, based on Volvo’s new-for-2015 V60, is the next generation of Volvo’s acclaimed Cross Country line offering all-road, all-weather driving capability, distinctive design and sophisticated safety and connectivity features.
As a pioneer in the premium wagon segment, Volvo blazed a new trail when it introduced the first V70 Cross Country nearly 20 years ago. Combining the traditional Volvo wagon virtues of comfort, safety and utility plus sporty style, increased ground clearance and charisma, the V70 was ahead of its time. The new V60 Cross Country continues this legacy while embarking on a bold new road.
Exclusive V60 Cross Country Design Elements
Volvo’s designers artfully crafted the next generation Cross Country by applying signature design cues to the solid foundation of the V60 wagon. These elements combine to give the new V60 Cross Country a look that captures the hearts of drivers longing to “go anywhere” while attracting a new generation of customers to the Volvo family.
Up front, the V60 Cross Country receives a new honeycomb grille and lower skid plate. The side is accented with new scuff plates, and black fender extensions that house exclusive 18-inch NESO Cross Country alloy wheels. Glossy black window trim and outside mirror covers contribute to the sporty elegance. At the rear, a lower skid plate provides the finishing touch while rear park assist is standard.
From every angle, the new V60 Cross Country projects a sense of purpose and freedom, reflecting active lifestyles while providing sporty control and adventure for drivers.
Performance Plus Standard Four-Season Traction
To endow the new V60 Cross Country with the ability to traverse roads off the beaten track, Volvo’s engineers increased its ground clearance by 2.6 inches (65mm) for total ground clearance of 7.9 inches (201mm).
Offered in two well-equipped models, the V60 T5 AWD Cross Country and V60 T5 AWD Cross Country Platinum are powered by Volvo’s signature 2.5-liter five-cylinder turbocharged engine that produces 250 horsepower @ 5,400 rpm and 266 lb.-ft. of torque @ 1,800-4,200 rpm. This engine is mated to an efficient six-speed “Geartronic” driver adaptive automatic transmission with Sport Mode.
Volvo’s electronically controlled All-Wheel Drive with Instant Traction™ is standard providing the best possible grip in all situations – on wet, slippery or completely dry roads. The advanced Haldex® AWD system delivers power to the wheels with the best grip. When a tire loses traction, power is reduced to that wheel and instantly transferred to the more sure-footed wheels.
Standard Hill Descent Control uses the vehicle’s brakes and engine torque to crawl in bottom gear on steep downhill slopes. This makes it possible for the driver to focus completely on driving when descending steep hills. The driver can control the speed with the brake pedal or the accelerator when Hill Descent Control is activated.
V60 Cross Country rides on new standard 18-inch NESO Cross Country alloy wheels with 235/50-R18 tires adding comfort and off-pavement aesthetics, reducing road noise and providing added wheel protection whether climbing curbs or negotiating rocky roads.
IntelliSafe by Volvo – The Industry Safety Leader
From features that support drivers to features that help prevent accidents and protect drivers and passengers in the event that one occurs, IntelliSafe is Volvo’s way of giving its customers everyday convenience and peace of mind, wherever they go.
The V60 Cross Country is equipped with Volvo’s high-tech safety solutions that actively help the driver avoid accidents and help protect the occupants if an accident is unavoidable.
Standard safety systems include City Safety, a world-first technology that made its debut on the Volvo XC60. City Safety is a driver support system aimed at preventing or mitigating collisions with a vehicle ahead occurring at speeds of 31 mph or less. It utilizes a closing velocity sensor to help determine whether a collision is likely. Depending on the closing speed, City Safety will either pre-charge the brakes or automatically brake the V60 Cross Country to help avoid a rear-end collision or lessen its impact.
Dynamic Stability and Traction Control (DSTC) is part of a suite of electronic systems to help optimize handling and control. Advanced Stability Control uses a roll angle sensor to detect and react to oversteer and understeer at an earlier stage. These situations may occur if the driver suddenly releases the accelerator while steering, such as when leaving a highway slightly too late. It also improves handling in evasive maneuvers. DSTC includes a sport mode setting to allow controlled wheel slip for performance driving.
In the event of an emergency maneuver, Roll Stability Control (RSC) can step in to help prevent the vehicle from rolling over. It features a gyroscopic sensor that registers the vehicle’s lean angle and rollover risk. If required, RSC will cut engine power or brake one or more of the wheels just enough to reduce the centrifugal force and help regain balance.
Corner Traction Control by Torque Vectoring is another standard technology to help improve handling by redistributing torque to the outer wheel to help “steer” the car around a turn. This feature operates on both the front and rear wheels for the V60 Cross Country. Enthusiast drivers will immediately notice a significant reduction in understeer as the system seamlessly applies the appropriate amount of power to the outside tire(s).
Pedestrian and Cyclist Detection with Full Auto Brake, offered on all V60 Cross Countries with the available Technology Package, is a groundbreaking technological solution that actively helps the driver to avoid accidents. Volvo’s radar- and camera-based system can detect pedestrians in front of the car, warn the driver if anyone walks out into its path and then automatically activate the V60 Cross Country’s full braking power if the driver fails to respond in time.
New advanced software with more rapid vision processing enables the system to cover certain cyclist situations as well. If a cyclist heading in the same direction as the car suddenly swerves out in front of the car and a collision is imminent, there is an instant warning and full braking power is applied.
Superb Comfort and Creative Cargo Solutions
The new V60 Cross Country provides a comfortable and luxurious environment for the driver and passengers whether they’re driving to dinner or embarking on a road trip to explore the great outdoors.
All V60 Cross Country models are fitted with standard contour seats that provide excellent comfort and support. Standard Cross Country leather seating surfaces with contrasting stitching are available in the hues of Off-Black, Soft Beige or Beechwood. The cabin is enhanced with standard Shimmer Graphite inlays while Urbane Wood or Piano Black Wood inlays are available as individual options.
Like the V60 wagon, the V60 Cross Country is equipped with a standard 40/20/40-split rear seat that increases versatility for transporting cargo. Each backrest in the three-piece rear seat is folded with exceptional ease to create a flat load floor.
The load area has been designed for maximum utility with access via a wide tailgate plus extra space for smaller items behind the wheel housings and under the load floor. Maximum cargo capacity is a generous 43.8 cubic feet.
Sensus Audio, Navigation and Connectivity Services
All V60s are equipped with the Volvo Sensus system. Sensus manages information from the audio unit, standard navigation and other functions, displaying them onto a seven-inch high-definition color monitor in the upper part of the center console. It allows the driver to explore the high-tech features of the car and personalize them to suit his or her needs.
A standard high-performance audio system includes a CD player, HD Radio, AUX and USB inputs, MP3 capability, 160-watt amplifier and eight speakers. Also included is Bluetooth hands-free phone interface with audio streaming and Sirius Satellite Radio with a complimentary six-month subscription.
The new Harman Kardon Premium Sound System is standard on the V60 Cross Country Platinum trim and available as an individual option for the base model. Volvo’s audio experts worked closely with world-renown Harman Kardon to create one of the best sounding systems in its class. Customers will experience a richer, clearer and more faithful sound wherever they are in the car thanks to innovative Dirac Live® technology. Details include:A five-channel Class-D amplifier with 130 watts for each channel providing superior power reserves for a wide dynamic range.
- Sound tuning with Dirac Live® provides an exceptional sound reproduction in the entire audible frequency range.
- Rich bass performance even without a subwoofer due to extended low bandwidth.
- Low distortion midrange speakers and mid-woofers with optimal damping characteristics.
- 25mm cloth dome tweeter with high sensitivity for a perfect interplay with midranges and woofers.
- Passive three-way system in front doors with crossover network:
- Low pass filter on front woofer to ensure better separation between midrange and woofer.
- Improved midrange with wider bandwidth to optimally play together with front woofer.
- Tweeter with high sensitivity.
- Midrange Speaker both for center and door yield an excellent tonal response.
Sensus Connect – The V60 Cross Country Sensus System is a platform for connectivity. Whether it’s connecting USB and AUX devices, wireless in-car connections using Bluetooth or broadband technologies that give access to internet and cloud-based services and apps, the V60 Cross Country is prepared and includes:
- Volvo unique cloud developed with Ericsson, a leader in mobile and fixed networking
- Cloud-based apps
- Connected service booking
- Onscreen vehicle owner’s manual
- Inernet browser
Connection is achieved by internal modem, and includes a six-month trial service period. Beyond that, the system can also be connected via the personal hotspot in the owner’s smartphone utilizing the customer’s existing data plan, and requires tethering capabilities within the customer’s plan.
Sensus Connect comes standard with a wide range of free apps to allow the owner to take advantage of some of the hottest apps available today:
- Local Search
- Park & Pay
- Send to Car
Sensus Navigation – The V60 Cross Country’s standard Sensus Navigation system integrates all navigation functions into the car. The system is easy to use, without taking attention from traffic and adding to the overall safety of the system.
Sensus Navigation includes:
- Improved graphics, including 3D imaging
- Improved voice recognition and flow
- New routing options (i.e. Eco route or area avoidance option)
- Built-in apps
Sensus Navigation provides all the functionality of Volvo’s previous navigation system and doesn’t require a Sensus Connect subscription. However, when such connection exists, the system provides a much more robust user experience and fully integrates with the built-in apps.
Free mapcare updates can be downloaded by the customer from any computer to a standard memory stick then easily downloaded into the car. The map data is updated twice per year.
Volvo On Call – Allows owners to enjoy the possibilities of in-car connectivity, the standard 3G-based Volvo On Call provides powerful reception by making use of the car’s rooftop antenna (monthly data charges apply after six-month introduction trial expires). The driver doesn’t need a smartphone onboard to have access to the cloud-based Volvo services. Users can easily connect smartphone, laptop or tablet to the internet.
Volvo On-Call emergency services include:
- SOS emergency button
- Automatic collision alert
- Theft recovery
With the Volvo On Call road assistance and convenience service, the owner can also have a great app to connect their Volvo with their smartphone. Owners can use their smartphone (iPhone and Android) to check the status of the car, lock and unlock the doors and even start the engine to warm up or cool down the interior before driving.
V60 Cross Country Packages and Options
Customers have the added convenience of selecting from an array of packages and individual options for the V60 Cross Country.
Climate Package – includes a heated windshield, heated steering wheel, heated front seats, heated rear seats, heated windshield washer nozzles and Interior Air Quality System (IAQS).
Convenience Package (included with Platinum trim) – includes Keyless Drive, rear park assist camera, HomeLink® integrated garage door opener, digital compass, grocery bag holder and power retractable outside mirrors.
Technology Package (included with Platinum trim) – features Volvo’s most advanced driver support systems including Adaptive Cruise Control with Queue Assist, Collision Warning with Full Auto Brake, Pedestrian and Cyclist Detection with Full Auto Brake, Distance Alert, Driver Alert Control, Lane Departure Warning, Road Sign Information and Active High Beam.
Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) Package – includes Blind Spot Information (BLIS), Cross Traffic Alert, Front Park Assist and Lane Change Merge Aid.
Individual Options – Metallic paint, heated front seats, Urbane Wood inlays, Piano Black Wood inlays, accessory prep cable, Keyless Drive (included with Platinum trim), dual two-stage child booster seats with power child door locks, Harman Kardon Premium Sound (included with Platinum trim) and dual screen rear entertainment system.
Volvo Cars solution for integrating self-driving cars
Volvo Cars presents a unique system solution for integrating self-driving cars into real traffic
Volvo Cars presents a unique, complete system solution that makes it possible to integrate self-driving cars into real traffic – with ordinary people in the driver’s seat.
“We are entering uncharted territory in the field of autonomous driving,” says Dr. Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President Research and Development of Volvo Car Group. “Taking the exciting step to a public pilot, with the ambition to enable ordinary people to sit behind the wheel in normal traffic on public roads, has never been done before.”
As the Drive Me project enters its second year, Volvo Cars is moving rapidly towards the aim of placing 100 self-driving cars in the hands of customers on selected roads around Gothenburg by 2017. The public pilot, one-of-a-kind collaboration between legislators, transport authorities, a major city and a vehicle manufacturer, is a central component of Volvo Cars’ plan to achieve sustainable mobility and ensure a crash-free future.
From lost time to quality time
Based on an extensive analysis of potential technical faults, Volvo Cars has designed a complete production-viable autonomous driving system. The key to making this unprecedented leap is a complex network of sensors, cloud-based positioning systems and intelligent braking and steering technologies.
“Autonomous driving will fundamentally change the way we look at driving. In the future, you will be able to choose between autonomous and active driving,” says Dr. Mertens. “This transforms everyday commuting from lost time to quality time, opening up new opportunities for work and pleasure.”
Moving beyond demonstrators
Volvo Cars’ Autopilot system is designed to be reliable enough to allow the car to take over every aspect of driving in autonomous mode. The technology advances a crucial step beyond the automotive systems demonstrated so far since it includes fault-tolerant systems.
“It is relatively easy to build and demonstrate a self-driving concept vehicle, but if you want to create an impact in the real world, you have to design and produce a complete system that will be safe, robust and affordable for ordinary customers,” says Dr. Erik Coelingh, Technical Specialist at Volvo Cars.
The main challenge is to design an Autopilot that is robust for traffic scenarios as well as for technical faults that may occur. It cannot be expected that the driver is ready to suddenly intervene in a critical situation. Initially, the cars will drive autonomously on selected roads with suitable conditions, for example without oncoming traffic, cyclists and pedestrians.
“Making this complex system 99 percent reliable is not good enough. You need to get much closer to 100 percent before you can let self-driving cars mix with other road users in real-life traffic,” says Erik Coelingh. “Here, we have a similar approach to that of the aircraft industry. Our fail-operational architecture includes backup systems that will ensure that Autopilot will continue to function safely also if an element of the system were to become disabled.”
For example, the probability of a brake system failure is very small, but a self-driving vehicle needs a second independent system to brake the vehicle to a stop, as it is unlikely that the driver will be prepared to press the brake pedal.
Handles complicated scenarios
On the road, the complete technology solution shall handle even the most complicated scenarios, from smooth commuting to heavy traffic and emergency situations.
“Just as good drivers would, potentially critical situations are approached with sensible caution. In a real emergency, however, the car reacts faster than most humans,” says Erik Coelingh.
When autonomous driving is no longer available – due to exceptional weather conditions, technical malfunction or the end of the route has been reached – the driver is prompted by the system to take over again.
If the driver is incapacitated for any reason and does not take over in time, the car will bring itself to a safe place to stop.
Consumer and societal benefits
In addition to simplifying people's lives and transforming the everyday commute from lost time to quality time, self-driving cars create environmental benefits.
Volvo Cars expects that autonomous driving could cut fuel consumption. The technology could also improve traffic flow as well as open up possibilities for urban planning and more cost-efficient investments in infrastructure.
“Developing a complete technological solution for self-driving cars is a major step. Once the public pilot is up and running, it will provide us with valuable knowledge about implementing self-driving cars in the traffic environment, and help us explore how they can contribute to sustainable mobility. Our smart vehicles are a key part of the solution, but a broad societal approach is vital to offer sustainable personal mobility in the future. This unique cross-functional co-operation is the key to a successful implementation of self-driving vehicles,” says Erik Coelingh.
A selection of Drive Me system solution components:
Volvo Cars is developing a holistic solution that generates exact positioning and a complete 360° view of the car’s surroundings. This is achieved by a combination of multiple radars, cameras and laser sensors. A redundant network of computers processes the information, generating a real-time map of moving and stationary objects in the environment.
Precise positioning is based on this surround information together with GPS and a high definition 3D digital map that is continuously updated with real-time data. The system is reliable enough to work without requiring driver supervision.
Combined radar and camera
The combined 76 GHz frequency-modulated continuous wave radar and camera placed in the windscreen is the same as that in the all-new XC90. This system reads traffic signs and the road’s curvature and can detect objects on the road such as other road users.
Four radars behind the front and rear bumpers (one on each corner of the car) are able to locate objects in all directions. By sweeping both left and right, transmitting waves that bounce off signs, poles, and tunnels, they monitor a full 360° around the car.
360° surround vision
Four cameras monitor objects in close proximity to the vehicle. Two are under the outer rear-view mirrors, one is in the rear bumper and one is in the grille. Besides detecting objects at close range, these cameras monitor lane markings.
The cameras have a high dynamic range and can handle very quick changes in lightning conditions, e.g. when entering a tunnel.
Multiple beam laser scanner
This sensor system is placed in the front of the vehicle, below the air intake. The scanner can identify objects in front of the car and ensures very high angle resolution. It can also distinguish between objects. The unique laser sensor has a range of 150 metrers for vehicles and covers a 140° field of view.
In addition, a trifocal camera placed behind the upper part of the windscreen is three cameras in one, providing a broad 140° view, a 45° view and a long-range, yet narrow, 34° view for improved depth perception and distant-object detection. The camera can spot suddenly appearing pedestrians and other unexpected road hazards.
Two long-range radars placed in the rear bumper of the car ensure a good rearward field of view. This technology is particularly useful when changing lanes because it can detect fast-moving vehicles approaching from far behind.
Twelve ultrasonic sensors around the car are used to identify objects close to the vehicle and support autonomous drive at low speeds.
The sensors are based on the technology used for current park assist functions enhanced with advanced signal processing.
A typical example of when this technology is useful is for detecting unexpected situations, such as pedestrians or hazards on the road close to the car.
High definition 3D digital map
A high definition 3D digital map is the tool used to provide the vehicle with information about the surroundings, e.g. altitude, road curvature, number of lanes, geometry of tunnels, guard rails, signs, exits, etc. The position geometry is in many cases at centimeter level.
High performance positioning
The high performance GPS is one part of the positioning control that is enhanced by a combination of an advanced GPS, a 3-degrees of freedom accelerometer and a 3-degrees of freedom gyro. By matching the 360 image created by the multitude of sensors with the map image, the car will get the information about its position in relation to the surroundings.
By combining the information from the sensors and the map, the Drive Me car is able to choose the best course in real time, factoring in variables such as the curvature of the road, speed limit, temporary signs and other traffic.
The cloud service is connected to the traffic authorities’ control center. This ensures that the most up-to-date traffic information is always available. The control center operators also have the ability to tell the drivers to turn off the autonomous drive mode if necessary.