DreamDrive Is Lucid's Answer to Tesla's Autopilot

  • Lucid unveils DreamDrive advanced driver-assist system with semi-autonomous features and OTA updates.
  • The system will monitor driver attention to keep their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel, indicating Level 2 capability.
  • Lucid says it's working on Level 3 features that will work in some driving situations.

This week Lucid Motors revealed the first details of its DreamDrive advanced driver-assist system, which will compete with Tesla's Autopilot and Full Self-Driving systems, among others. It has 32 sensor inputs, including ultrasonic, radar, 18 cameras, solid-state Lidar, and driver attention sensors.

With Traffic Jam Assist, DreamDrive's electric sedan will be able to stay in its lane and respond to other vehicles around it at speeds between zero and 40 mph. "An infrared driver camera tracks head position, eye gaze, and blinking," the automaker says.

As for Auto Park, DreamDrive will be able to detect parallel and perpendicular spots and enter them automatically, managing steering and drive inputs.

The system uses an Ethernet Ring, which is a high-speed data network that uses four computer gateways, each positioned in one of the four corners of the sedan, to relay data at gigabit speeds.

"DreamDrive Pro is designed to grow in capability as we deliver software over-the-air and key equipment already in the vehicle," said Eugene Lee, Lucid Motors' senior director of ADAS and autonomous driving. "Lucid can develop new DreamDrive Pro features in-house thanks to highly integrated hardware and software teams. This can benefit everything from the frequency of updates to the upcoming Highway Pilot system for conditional automated driving on select highways."

It's worth noting what DreamDrive does not promise.

For starters, it does not guarantee that drivers can ignore the road. In addition, driver monitoring sensors will ensure that drivers keep their hands off the wheel at all times. There are a few caveats here that point to a system lacking Level 3 and 4 systems, some of which are already available in other vehicles. Now it appears to be a Level 2 system, like Autopilot and FSD.

The company says Level 3 capabilities are coming, albeit in limited circumstances.

"Nineteen key safety, driving, and parking assist features will be available on Lucid Air upon launch, with eight more to follow via over-the-air (OTA) updates. DreamDrive is also developing Level 3 driving capabilities in certain conditions "Lucid 2020.

Highway Pilot with conditional hands-free capability will also be offered in the future, says the company.

Unlike GM's upcoming Ultra Cruise system, Lucid's system appears to be taking a cautious approach to Level 2 autonomy, not offering hands-free driving yet. While it will have a much larger sensor suite than other advanced driver-assist systems on the market, it won't be pushing the envelope just yet.

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