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Autonomous driving hits the mainstream

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Canalys says 3.5 million new cars had Level 2 features in Q4 2020, representing a 91% growth rate year on year.

The big rise is because Level 2 features are being adopted by mainstream brands such as Honda and Toyota which now sell the most cars with level 2 driving functions, overtaking premium brands.

“They have suites of ADAS (advanced driver assistance system) features,” said Canalys Chief Analyst Chris Jones. This includes level 2 driving as standard in most of their popular models and others such as Ford and VW Group are following in their wake.

Some types of vehicles in a certain markets are yet to show any interest in autonomous technology, including pick-up trucks in the US, compact cars in Europe, entry-level SUVs and crossovers and city cars in China and Kei cars in Japan.

Canalysys seems to think this is only a matter of time. “When level 2 driving penetrates these vehicle types, it will be everywhere – then it’s up to the consumer to choose it, and use it,” concluded Jones.