Toyota’s CEO Akio Toyoda announced the company’s ambition to tackle the age of driverless cars with its e-Palette.
This electric, self-driving vehicle is versatile by design. It could be a cargo van or a flexible complement to an established mass transit system or a pizza delivery vehicle. The e-Palette isn't really a specific vehicle, but more of a class of vehicles. It will come in at least three sizes, and the interior of any given vehicle will depend on what it's going to be used for.
Recently, Toyota unveiled the latest version of its autonomous test vehicle. The car, which is being tested in Silicon Valley by the Japanese automaker’s research arm, is a Lexus LS 600hL equipped with powerful LIDAR sensors, radar, camera arrays,and two steering wheels.
The idea is that no matter what, or who, you want to move, there's an e-Palette for that. And you'll never need a steering wheel or pedals.
“We can quickly create a mobile hub for services from medical clinics to entertainment and festivals, Just think how good e-Palette would be at Burning Man,” Toyoda said as he shared the dais with his company’s concept vehicle at CES.
Toyota says it will work with Amazon, Didi Chuxing, Mazda, Pizza Hut, and Uber. The Japanese auto giant says it hopes to debut its e-Palette project at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.