Honda announced Wednesday the next generation of its suite of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems—Honda Sensing 360 and Honda Sensing Elite—will arrive in the U.S. in the late 2020s, with the technology coming standard by 2030. With improvement to the AI and expanded sensory range, future Hondas will reach Level 3 autonomy. That’s if Honda can really pull it off.
The Japanese automaker says the new Honda Sensing 360 will come with an expanded sensory range allowing enhanced crash avoidance. Meanwhile, Honda Sensing Elite will allow its drivers to sit through stop-and-go traffic, merge on to a busy freeway or get that perfect park job in the garage without the use of a tennis ball, all hands free.
There’s a caveat, of course. This announcement that Level 3 will come to American cars is still an indeterminate amount of years away.
“The improved Honda Sensing 360 system will begin rolling out in the 2nd half of the decade and will be standard on all new Honda and Acura models in the U.S. by 2030,” Honda said in its press release.
Honda is generally more cautious than its fellow automakers in the semi-autonomous space. Honda’s invested a little money in GM’s Cruise and come up with some neat micro-mobility vehicles for driving-adverse folk in Japan, but has mainly focused on developing a safety suite centered on the driver.
Then in 2020 Honda announced it would be the first to bring mass-produced Level 3 autonomy to market. A year later Honda’s new flagship sedan, the Legend, would come with the advanced, AI-driven Level 3 Honda Sensing Elite, a Level 3 system. The Legend isn’t sold here in the U.S. The automaker made Honda Sensing available in the U.S. in 2014, but the first generation is consider Level 2 only.
So far, Honda has kept its self-appointed timetable better than certain other automakers who boast their semi-autonomous capabilities, though we’ll see if it can hit Level 4 by 2025. There still seem to be some bugs to work out, as Automotive News’s review of the Honda’s flagship Level 3 technology found it pretty lacking. Much like flying cars, the goal post seems to move farther and farther afield every year.