Nvidia’s Drive AGX Xavier technology will provide the Swedish premium car group with a computing platform that offers more power for advanced driver assistance systems and the flexibility to upgrade the car’s functions if and when needed.

  • Nvidia’s technology will deliver “Level 2+” automated driving features, indicating it will offer more than today’s traditional ADAS
  • Current automated systems aren’t reliable enough for more advanced autonomy and that more powerful computers are required
Volvo said it will jointly develop with Nvidia a “highly advanced, AI-capable core computer for the next generation of Volvo cars.”

The computer system will be used in Volvo vehicles that will be based on the carmaker's so-called Scalable Product Architecture 2 (SPA 2) vehicle platform, which will underpin

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Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang tells the GTC developer conference that his company's technology will address the need for more computing power (Photo: Nvidia

models coming to market early in the next decade.

The initial production release of Nvidia’s technology will deliver “Level 2+” automated driving features, indicating it will offer more than today’s traditional ADAS. Level 2 means a driver will have to be involved in piloting a car at all times.

Both companies stressed the need for more computing power if highly automated driving is to be realized in coming years.

“A successful launch of autonomous drive will require an enormous amount of computing power as well as constant advances in artificial intelligence,” Volvo CEO Hakan Samuelsson said in a statement.

Speaking at an Nvidia developer conference here, Nvidia founder and CEO Jensen Huang said: “Volvo understands there is a direct connection between safety, comfort, and the computing capability inside the vehicle.”

Nvidia executives said the auto industry is aware that current automated systems aren’t reliable enough for more advanced autonomy and that more powerful computers are required.

For Nvidia, which started out making graphics chips for the gaming industry, the automotive sector has become steadily more important. The company is one of the biggest players in high-performance computing, which is needed both for virtual-reality implementations and for the big auto-industry move in the direction of autonomous driving.

Said Huang: “Everything that will move in the future will have autonomous capability.”

Veoneer, Continental 

Separately, Swedish supplier Veoneer and Germany’s Continental also announced deeper ties with Nvidia.

Veoneer said it would deploy Nvidia’s Drive AGX Xavier computer to underpin a system it is building for level 4 autonomous driving. The system, which is called Zeus, will use a driving software stack from Zenuity, a joint venture between Volvo and Veoneer.

Said Veoneer CEO Jan Carlson: “We developed Zeus to provide safe mobility solutions, and it is an important step towards industrializing autonomous driving in 2021.”

Veoneer is one of the companies spun off of Swedish supplier Autoliv.

Continental said its assisted and automated driving control unit (ADCU) is powered by DRIVE AGX Xavier. The supplier is developing a single platform architecture that scales from Level 2+ to higher levels all the way up to fully autonomous Level 5 robotaxis.

-By Arjen Bongard