Kia is expanding the research and development of its autonomous technologies to create more driver-assist features by 2020 and a fully-autonomous car by 2030.

“Fully-autonomous vehicles are still some way off, and a great deal of research and rigorous product testing will need to be carried out to make the ‘self-driving car’ a reality,” said Tae-Won Lim, Self-driving carvice president of the corporate R&D division for Hyundai Motor Group.

Kia’s first phase includes a $2 billion investment to develop the brand’s Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS). That cost will cover the project until 2018, and includes the development of three types of autonomous technologies, as detailed by Kia:

  • “Recognition” – the development of new sensors to detect other vehicles and hazards, read the road ahead and identify poor driving conditions.
  • “Judgment” – advanced computing systems allowing the car to make decisions based on the information gathered by ADAS sensors.
  • “Control” – active electronic and mechanical systems allowing the vehicle to carry out the decisions taken by the autonomous technology in any given situation.

Kia plans to begin incorporating ADAS systems into its vehicles by 2020. The first technologies to be used are categorized as Level 2 autonomous technology, such as Highway Driving Assist (which uses an adaptive cruise control and keeps the vehicle within its lane), Traffic Jam Assist for easier driving in congested areas, and a smart parking option.

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In order to bring its self-driving car to market by 2030, Kia said it will first develop a suite of communication systems to enable vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V), vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) and vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communication.

“Kia is still in the early stages of developing its own technologies, and we are confident that the latest innovations – both partially and fully autonomous – will ultimately make driving safer for everyone,” said Lim.