Navigant Report Surprises With Which Automakers Are At Forefront of Autonomous Driving

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Navigant Research has produced a Leaderboard report listing the leading companies who are developing automated driving systems. The report, surprisingly, puts Ford at the lead with General Motors and the Renault-Nissan Alliance close behind. Daimler (BMW) is a close fourth placer with most others falling into the “contenders” category. Tesla Motors, who’s automation is often headline-grabbing, is somewhere in the middle field of players, well behind less publicly-known companies such as Waymo and Delphi.

The report examines the strategy and execution of automated driving systems from 18 leading companies in the field. The development of the technologies, Navigant says, is coming quickly thanks to advances in computing and sensors.

Sam Abuelsamid, senior research analyst at Navigant Research, says:

“Tremendous progress has been made in just the last few years on the development of automated driving systems. However, as we get closer to deploying high-level automated driving, everyone involved must now address the remaining questions that are in many ways more difficult to answer than developing the foundational technologies.

“The companies that have the resources and expertise to ensure that the automation technologies are robust enough to operate in a broad range of conditions while also supporting business models that bring access to the masses are the most likely to succeed.”

The report rates the 18 companies on 10 criteria: vision; go-to market strategy; partners; production strategy; technology; sales, marketing, and distribution; product capability; product quality and reliability; product portfolio; and staying power.