Chief examiner at Toyota Motors advanced technology subsidiary Yoshiaki Matsuo

Automotive World 2017: Toyota’s Matsuo says “We need 14 billion kilos worth of data for totally autonomous cars”

Chief examiner at Toyota Motors advanced technology subsidiary, Yoshiaki Matsuo, held a special lecture at Auto World 2017 where he offered that “if we are going to deliver completely autonomous vehicles to consumers, we are going to need about 14 billion kilometers worth of testing completed at the very least.”

Mr. Matsuo stated that “self-driving vehicles are currently in the middle of an upheaval over what the technology can do, but regardless of how spectacular those functions may be, if the systems they utilize with are not safe or dependable then they will not be adopted by the public. We are going to need data that shows that not only drivers themselves will be safe, but that others around them will be safe as well.”

Give more concrete figures, Mr. Matsuo stated that “I believe that we will need at lease 14 billion kilometers of drive testing before we can deliver a completely self-driving car to the public that won’t cause accidents. This amount of driving would in actuality be unfeasible, so we will need to develop simulations for these tests as well.”

Going on, “What is most pressing is how much data we can actually accumulate from simulations from all sorts of different scenarios. In order to figure this out, we will need to use research data and data obtained from real driving on public roads to create reproductions of patterns that real drivers exhibit. If we just use data from prototype vehicles, this will obviously not be nearly sufficient, necessitating data from cars we’re presently selling as well. For instance, one option is to perhaps partner with taxi companies whose drivers cover a large amount of distance regularly and try to accumulate data from them as well.”

[Translated by Bryce Clarke]