The project is called Nightonomy, Ford has fitted a Ford Fusion Hybrid with LiDAR sensors that allow it to be autonomous even in complete darkness and without headlights! LIDAR sensors are coupled to cameras and radars, all managed by a virtual driving software.
This research vehicle was put to the test in the desert, it works thanks to precise 3D maps in high definition with road markings, geography, topography...
The test allowed Ford engineers to confirm the ability of the car to be autonomous, even at night with no less than 2.8 million laser flashes per second sent by the LiDAR.
Ford also has a fleet of autonomous vehicles in the United States and will triple it this year bringing the number to 30 autonomous Ford Fusion Hybrid driving on open roads to collect data and to fine tune its technology!