Subaru is preparing next-generation AI-based EyeSight driver assistance systems from 2025

Automakers around the world routinely evaluate the functionality of their automated driving systems against levels such as those standardized by the Society of Automotive Engineers.

But Shibata refused to say what level future EyeSight systems will reach. Subaru is more focused on reducing accidents and fatalities than ending self-driving cars.

Subaru says vehicles equipped with EyeSight are involved in 40 percent as many pedestrian collisions as cars without EyeSight and only 16 percent as many rear-end collisions.

And unlike many of its competitors, Subaru is in no rush to adopt lidar sensors for its safety systems.

Pairing artificial intelligence with Subaru’s current stereo camera system is more effective, said Toru Saito, deputy director of Subaru Lab. Dual cameras are better than lidar at creating three-dimensional images because the two cameras triangulate objects from different angles.

Artificial intelligence enhances the system by interpreting hard-to-detect objects such as a person lying on the road or worn or obscured lane lines.

“The use of stereo cameras in combination with AI has a great advantage,” said Saito. “Other automakers are taking a multi-solution approach, using radar, monocular cameras and lidar. But stereo cameras can do what these three technologies can do individually.”

Automated parking will be another new push for Subaru. “According to statistics, parking lot accidents account for a third of all traffic accidents,” Shibata said. “So our stance is to focus first on car parking in the field of autonomous driving in 2025 and beyond.”

Upgrade for the US?

In 2020, Subaru introduced its most advanced version of the technology, EyeSight X, in the redesigned Levorg, a car for the Japanese market. EyeSight X, which is not yet available in the US, enables hands-free driving in freeway traffic jams.

Shibata said Subaru wants to offer EyeSight X in the US, but the timing of the launch is uncertain. The system needs to be optimized for overseas roads, maps and satellite positioning.

The latest version of EyeSight for the US features an improved setup with a third wide-angle camera that offers a wider view and better range for detecting cyclists and pedestrians.

Subaru’s profit rose 25 percent last quarter as the Japanese automaker regained lost production, increased sales and benefited from favorable exchange rates.

Subaru’s performance was supported by rising sales as the company gradually recovered from the manufacturing crunch caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and global semiconductor shortages.

Global production increased 12 percent to 205,000 vehicles from April to June and helped boost global sales by 12 percent to 196,000 vehicles. The recovery helped Subaru gain a foothold after it struggled to fill the product pipeline amid strong demand for its products.

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