Honda has commenced the introduction of the higher level semi-autonomous driving (Level 3) feature in its home country of Japan. The Honda Legend Hybrid will be the world’s first production car to have the assistance system dubbed Honda Sensing Elite.
The Honda Sensing Elite suite has additional cameras, LIDAR (light detection and ranging) sensors, and radar sensors together with high-accuracy 3D maps and a global navigation satellite system (GNSS) to perform hands-free driving for an extended period of time.
One of the key features of the Honda Sensing Elite is the ability to perform overtaking maneuvers autonomously. When the system detects a car in front being driven at a lower speed, the system notifies the driver and then assists with the overtaking before returning to the original lane.
During trips in traffic jams, the Traffic Jam Pilot will autonomously drive the Honda Legend Hybrid, controlling the braking, acceleration, and steering. The system drives, stops, and resumes driving within the same lane while maintaining a proper following interval in accordance with the speed of the vehicle detected ahead.
While the vehicle is under the control of the system, the driver can watch streaming videos on the infotainment screen or operate the navigation system to search for destinations, which helps mitigate driver fatigue and stress while driving in a traffic jam.
An Emergency Stop Assist feature is in place, should the driver be unresponsive to the multiple system requests for the driver to assume control of the vehicle. For example, if a driver suddenly loses consciousness while the Honda Legend is already in ‘hands-off’ functionality, the Honda Sensing Elite system will gradually slow the car down and steer itself to the road shoulder and alert other vehicles using the hazard lights and horn.
With exterior styling is befitting a flagship sedan, the automated driving sensors are subtly integrated into the body panels, producing a clean design while discreetly highlighting the vehicle’s automated driving capability.
In Malaysia, the Honda Sensing suite with adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assist system is available in the TC-P variants of the Honda Civic, Honda CR-V and Honda Accord. The soon-to-be on-sale all-new Honda City RS eHEV will also come equipped with Honda Sensing.