Alfa Romeo is working to install some self-driving technology into its Giulia sedan.
Speaking with Autocar, Alfa boss Harald Wester said that while fully self-driving cars won’t come from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) until at least 2024, Alfa Romeo is working on an autopilot system for the Giulia which would work similar to Tesla’s autopilot. In a Tesla Model S, autopilot will drive the car on the highway almost totally by itself, though drivers are required to be alert and ready to take control from the system at all times.
“I am absolutely convinced that once fully autonomous vehicles are established, the more people will appreciate driving on a road free of traffic and enjoy driving their car again,” said Wester. He believes that self-driving cars are the future and he wants Alfa Romeo to be competitive. “We have been asked several times whether such technology is in contrast with a brand like Alfa Romeo. I think the opposite is correct,” he said.
Wester also specifically called out busy highways, saying that he wants drivers stuck in traffic to be able to spend their time more effectively, suggesting that the Giulia will be able to take care of driving in dense traffic.
As for what’s next for Alfa Romeo, the brand will begin to develop the Giulia’s smaller and larger cousins, which will include a crossover. “The Alfa Romeo group is now concentrating on developing the brothers and sisters of this first baby. We are going to spend many more billions to develop the rest. And obviously the credibility of the programme depends very much on this car, the architecture and its commercial success,” said Wester.
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