Audi recently hosted demonstrations of Connected Vehicle to Everything (C-V2X) technology in Oceanside, California. The demonstrations showcased a variety of C-V2X use cases that offer the potential to reduce the likelihood of collisions between vehicles and cyclists.
C-V2X is the use of cellular communication technology between a vehicle and its environment; including road users, traffic elements or other vehicles. These can be traffic lights, pedestrian crossings, road signs, school buses, road works, … Thanks to this technology, the display in the cockpit of an Audi vehicle can inform drivers when they have to become aware of a particular situation and adapt their driving accordingly. This technology can allow drivers to recognize dangerous situations much earlier than if they were driving without this aid. Audi showcased use cases aimed at benefiting both drivers and road cyclists, including:
– Proximity warning / Forward and rear collision warning: When a vehicle and a cyclist approach each other, a notification appears indicating where a possible collision may occur.
– Cross Traffic Alert: The vehicle detects if a bicycle is in a possible collision course when approaching from the left or the right forward.
– Parallel Park Departure Alert: As it pulls out of its curb space, a parallel parked vehicle detects if a bicycle is approaching from behind.
– Right turn assist: The driver gives the indication of the turn signal to turn right while the cyclist is going straight.
– Left turn assist: The vehicle gives a left turn indication and receives a notification if a cyclist approaches from the opposite direction and potentially enters the vehicle turn.
These demonstrated use cases indicate that C-V2X technology has the potential to increase vehicle awareness and enable more cooperative riding between cyclists and vehicles. In March 2022, Audi of America announced that it was collaborating with Spoke, a mobility platform for safety, connectivity and enriched driving experiences, as well as other partners, to explore technical solutions for C-V2X with car-to-bike connected technologies.
This collaboration aims to bring technology to consumers to help reduce road accidents and fatalities involving vehicles and bicycles. There are nearly 1,000 bicycle fatalities and another 130,000 bicycle injuries that occur on the roads in the United States each year. Cyclist fatalities are on an upward trend, rising 5% from 2020 to 2021, totaling 985 fatalities.
Audi believes that C-V2X connected mobility is the gateway to dramatic improvements and the time has come to enable rapid deployment of C-V2X technology for road safety. Earlier this year, Audi joined several other automakers, technology innovators, traffic equipment manufacturers, states and localities in seeking a waiver from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to immediately put C-V2X on the American roads. Public feedback on this request has been overwhelmingly positive, and Audi is asking the FCC to grant the waivers. Audi and others are awaiting final regulations from the FCC that will ensure the carrier’s wireless spectrum remains viable for direct, time-critical V2X communications.