Aptera Motors has been announcing its fundraising progress for months now, to start its production. Now the solar EV maker announces that it plans to select an open-source driver assistance system. It will be called open pilot as its official system that will be integrated into its solar EVs.
Aptera Motors is making significant progress towards its goal of achieving scaled EV production and hopes to achieve this milestone sometime next year in 2024. The company’s Accelerator program has been extended recently, which is expected to help secure significant funding required for SEV production. Aptera has been awarded a grant of $21 million in California, which will cover the cost of the necessary equipment and will be reimbursed by the grant.
In January of this year, Aptera gave us a sneak peek of its Launch Edition. The excitement for the first commercialized solar EV continues to build, and with the introduction of the open pilot driver assistance system, drivers can look forward to advanced features such as adaptive cruise control and lane centering when the Launch Editions hit the roads. According to the news from Aptera Motors today, its engineers will create and maintain the necessary code specific to its solar EV that can interface with the open-source driver assistance system open pilot, originally developed by comma.ai, though the companies currently have zero affiliation.
Consumer Reports previously ranked open pilot as the top driver assistance system, and it remains the only consumer system, besides Tesla, that can bring a vehicle to a complete stop at stop signs and red lights. What’s more, an open pilot accomplishes this with only 1/10th the power consumption of other systems. Aptera claims that this means future owners should not experience any significant loss of efficiency while using the driver assistance system. Veteran open pilot community member Chris McCammon is spearheading the Aptera integration and shared his thoughts on how the open-source system has evolved since 2017, “Since then, the software has matured immensely and now supports over 200 vehicle models with an easy-to-install kit. Even though the open pilot has vastly surpassed nearly all driver assistance systems on the market today, big auto players have not embraced it. They continue to throw hundreds of millions of dollars into developing their own inferior systems, while open-pilot is open-source software that anyone can implement for free.”
Aptera says that it is currently deciphering exactly how open pilot driver assistance can best be integrated into its vehicles and that several validation steps will be required leading up to the solar EV’s start of production.