Jaguar Land Rover is currently researching a new connected car technology which will allow a vehicle to identify potholes and warn other vehicles about them via the cloud.
The car maker’s prototype system is based on the Land Rover Range Rover Evoque along with its MagnaRide active suspension. Several sensors on the car monitor movement and changes to the suspension height in order to identify the state of the road surface and adjusts suspension firmness accordingly.
For the next stage of the project, Jaguar Land Rover's Advanced Research Centre plans to install a forward-facing stereo digital camera that scans the road ahead for potholes and makes the necessary manoeuvres to minimise or avoid damage to the car. This is a crucial step in the company’s plans for autonomous driving in the future.
Dr Mike Bell, Global Connected Car Director, Jaguar Land Rover said, “At the moment the most accurate data comes from when the car has driven over the pothole or manhole.”
Should the prototype encounter a pothole, it is capable of geotagging the location of the road defect and share this data in real-time via the cloud with other vehicles, helping them deal with the potholes effectively. The data is also useful for authorities as they now have better information on potholes and their severity, making the allocation of resources to have them repaired more efficient.
The project is ongoing in the United Kingdom at the moment, where the cost of vehicle damage caused by potholes in the UK is estimated at £2.8 billion (RM16,205,381,024) every year.