Toyota’s autonomous driving levels confusing

According to Autocar, Toyota currently has six driving levels for autonomy, however, the boss of Toyota’s Research Institute believes the classification system is causing confusion over the progress being made in the development of self-driving vehicle systems.

Toyota’s system was presented by automotive body SAE International in 2014 and includes six levels of autonomy. These range from zero (system can only issue warnings to drivers) to Level 5 (fully driverless).

Most manufacturers are currently working on Level 2 (defined as ‘hands off’), Level 3 (‘eyes off’) or Level 4 (‘mind off’). However, Toyota Research Institute boss Gill Pratt said the slight differences between the three levels is hindering development.

‘It’s extremely important not to confuse the driving of levels with a gauge of where different companies are’ he told Autocar. ‘Level 4 autonomy depends on where you’re doing it, so you have to go a stage deeper.’