Why we chose the Lexus RX450h

    Creating an unmanned vehicle is an extremely exciting activity, filled with many engineering challenges. One of them is choosing the right base (car) for the future unmanned system. As you may have noticed from previous posts, OSCAR uses the Lexus RX450h, and we made this choice for a reason.

    Candidates



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    • Lincoln mkz
    • Toyota Prius
    • Genesis G80
    • Lexus RX 450h


    Initial requirements


    Electric control (no hydraulics)
    Our software must be able to control the mechanical subsystems of the car (gas, brake, steering, etc.) and the easiest way to do this is with electronic controls. Otherwise, we would have to install additional equipment in the car in the form of actuators and servos in order to control the steering wheel and gas / brake.

    CAN bus
    The most common standard in the automotive industry. Since OSCAR is an open-source project, we are interested in attracting the maximum number of enthusiasts to the project. Choosing FlexRay / LIN or another standard would greatly limit the range of vehicles supported by the project. StarLine also has over 10 years of experience.with CAN.

    Hybrid
    Hybrid cars not only do less damage to the environment, but also have powerful batteries that can be used to power additional equipment (computing unit, GPU, lidars, cameras, etc.). Moreover, the software (neural networks, computer vision, data processing) has high power consumption and a standard car battery would not be enough.

    Lincoln mkz


    One of the most suitable for unmanned technology vehicles used by companies Udacity, Pony.AI, Drive.AI and some others. In addition, the car is supported by the Apollo platform . However, it has a high cost.

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    Pros:

    • electronic gearbox
    • electric power steering
    • adaptive cruise control
    • hybrid (powerful built-in batteries)

    Minuses:

    • not for sale in Russia, difficult for those. Service
    • high price ($ 47,000 + taxes + shipping costs)
    • long delivery from the USA


    Toyota Prius


    A fairly reliable hybrid is already in the third generation. Companies like Waymo and Yandex use this car in their decisions.

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    Pros:

    • hybrid (powerful built-in batteries)
    • large display (can be used for visualization)
    • auto parking
    • electric power steering
    • electronic gearbox


    Minuses:

    • no adaptive cruise control
    • not very spacious lounge

    Genesis G80


    Hyundai Premium Division Product. Provides access to virtually all subsystems of the car at the program level, which is extremely important for AV (unmanned vehicle). Not very popular in Russia, so maintenance and modification may be difficult.

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    Pros:

    • electric power steering
    • electronic gearbox
    • adaptive cruise control with Stop & Go
    • auto parking

    Minuses:

    • not a hybrid (will have to install an additional battery)

    Lexus RX 450h (winner)


    In the end, won the RX450h. The Toyota premium division model has almost everything we need + comfort and reliability. Apple and some other companies have successfully used this car.

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    Pros:

    • electric power steering
    • adaptive cruise control
    • hybrid (powerful built-in batteries)
    • Lexus is popular in Russia (easy maintenance and modification)
    • Built-in AEB (Auto Emergency Braking)
    • Integrated character recognition
    • Built-in lane retention system

    Minuses:

    • not an electronic gearbox (which is not critical yet)

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    Now we have a car, so it's time for us to move on and talk about what we are going to build. In one of the following publications, we will talk about the OSCAR platform and our plans for the future.

    Gitlab project

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