Subaru is developing a new version of its EyeSight driver assist system using artificial intelligence (AI) that’s set to be introduced from 2025, according to overseas reports.
According to Automotive News, the Japanese carmaker will use AI to deliver some level of autonomous driving and automatic parking assist.
The AI will also reportedly improve computer recognition in hard-to-see scenarios, like when road markers are covered in snow.
This new technology will build on the existing windscreen-mounted stereo camera system that helps to “detect, minimise or even prevent collisions”, and has pedestrian and cyclist detection, among other features.
It will also reportedly be created in part at Subaru’s new AI development centre, Subaru Lab, where engineers are using machine learning to deliver battery safety features at a quicker pace.
Unlike many of its competitors, Subaru is reportedly in no rush to integrate LiDAR sensors into its safety systems.
Subaru Lab deputy director Toru Saito told Automotive News that pairing AI with stereo cameras is more effective than LiDAR because the two cameras can triangulate objects from different angles, creating better three-dimensional imagery.
“The use of stereo camera has a huge advantage in connection with AI,” said Mr Saito.
“Other carmakers pursue a multi-solution approach and use radars, monocular cameras and LiDAR. But stereo camera are capable of doing what these three technologies can do individually.”
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has previously shared a similar sentiment, arguing there is no need for anything other than cameras, when humans can drive without the need for anything other than their eyes.
Future versions of the EyeSight driver assist system will reportedly be compatible with over-the-air updates, though Subaru didn’t disclose a timeline for when that’ll start.
Subaru recently announced it has sold sold more than five million vehicles equipped with its EyeSight driver assistance system globally.
EyeSight-equipped models also currently account for 91 per cent of its global sales, according to the automaker.
Over the years the safety system has gained more features and recently gained a new stereo camera in other markets that features a third wide-angle greyscale camera for a better field of view.
Subaru also introduced its EyeSightX advanced driver assist system in Japan in 2020.
This EyeSightX system has a new stereo camera with four radars in the front and rear bumpers which allow for “extended functions” such as autonomous driving in congested traffic, lane change assist, and speed control before entering a curve in the road.
It’s unclear at this stage when any of these updated EyeSight systems will be introduced in Australia.