Toyota unveils new models of Lexus and Mirai in Japan

by SpeedLux
2020 Toyota Mirai

Toyota Motor unveiled new models of Lexus and Mirai in Japan on Thursday, geared up with advanced driver assistance, as rivalry in the sector continues to bring more self-driving and connected cars.

Toyota’s recent launch comes as range of companies are investing in this sector.

Toyota’s new driving assist technology or Advanced Drive, has a level 2 autonomous system that assists drivers with driving the vehicle, such as limiting the car in its lane, maintaining the distance from other automobiles, and changing lanes under the driver’s supervision.

The luxury sedan Lexus LS will be available from Thursday. It will be costing between about 16.3 million yen ($148k) and 17.9 million yen ($163k), while the second-generation Mirai hydrogen fuel cell vehicle will be available by April 12 at between 8.4 million ($76k) and 8.6 million yen ($7.8k).

The new models are the automaker’s first products brought to the market are offering over-the-air updates and utilize AI technology centered on deep learning, said automaker’s executive James Kuffner, who is also the head of the automaker’s research unit Woven Planet.

“This is really a crucial first step in our journey towards software-first development,” he said at an online briefing on Thursday, adding that the company has attempted to design the software to be truly worldwide and to provide re-usability.

In the future, software functions on cars will be “upgradable” and “more customizable” much like how people personalize their smartphones, Kuffner said.

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