When it comes to high-tech features, Nissan's achievements are often overshadowed by those from other automakers.
But Nissan has been working long and hard to make its cars safer and more efficient. The best example of that is probably the all-electric Leaf, but the company has also debuted a number of intriguing safety systems over the past few years.
Now, it's taking all those safety systems and wrapping them into one protective, self-driving ball: an autonomous car. And as our colleagues at Motor Authority report, Nissan has promised to deliver that car to consumers by the year 2020.
According to Nissan, this autonomous car is the offspring of Safety Shield, Nissan's array of safety devices that includes the Emergency Assist for Pedal Misapplication, the Autonomous Emergency Steering System, and a camera-based safety system that's already available on the 2013 Altima. Safety Shield is a key element of Nissan's "Vision Zero" plan, which hopes to eliminate the vast majority of traffic fatalities and injuries in Nissan vehicles by 2025.
We're years way from learning about the specific model on which Nissan will base its autonomous car, but the prototype above is a reworked Nissan Leaf.
We're also years away from learning about the cost of this self-driving wonder, but chances are, it'll come with a premium pricetag. That said, Nissan doesn't want autonomous technology to be reserved only for well-heeled customers. The company plans to offer autonomous options across the entire Nissan product range within two vehicle generations (or about 14 years)
For additional details, check out the interview posted above, in which Nissan's Andy Palmer explains the company's rationale for developing self-driving cars.