Audi Announces the First Car to "Talk" to Traffic Lights

Illustration of traffic in urban environment 2 photos
Photo: Audi
Traffic light in intersection
Audi has announced that it has prepared the first cars capable of “talking” to traffic lights.
The system is called Traffic Light Information and it marks the first step of V2I integration, a feature that will eventually be had by all automobiles on the market. V2I stands for Vehicle to Infrastructure, and it means linking the two entities so that they both operate better.

The first cars to benefit from V2I technology will be the 2017 Audi Q7, A4, and A4 Allroad, all available this fall. Evidently, do not expect this to work everywhere, but certain cities in the U.S.A. have been converted to “smart cities,” and they feature the V2I systems on its traffic lights.

The link works through Audi’s Connect Prime feature, and also uses the onboard LTE data connection, as well as services from Traffic Technology Services. When a driver reaches a “connected traffic light,” the dash of the V2I-compatible car will inform them how much time is left until the signal changes to green.

In today’s world, this helps drivers be more prepared of when they can enter the intersection. For cars with a manual transmission, each traffic light would enable the driver to gain a few more minutes with the engine off, while still being prepared to drive off when the light turns green without having to floor the gas or risk stalling the motor because of distraction.

Similar benefits will apply to those that drive automatics with Start-Stop systems. We must note that it is unwise to floor it at the moment the light turns green, as there is a risk of encountering a vehicle from another direction, which has run a red light. This does not occur every day, but it is best not to anticipate a green at any intersection.

In the future, this technology will help semi-autonomous and fully autonomous cars navigate traffic faster. Furthermore, the traffic lights themselves could react to the flow of traffic.

Who knows, maybe someday the directions on your navigation system will be taken into consideration by the traffic light you are approaching and just maybe you will get a green light earlier.
If you liked the article, please follow us:  Google News icon Google News Youtube Instagram
Press Release
About the author: Sebastian Toma
Sebastian Toma profile photo

Sebastian's love for cars began at a young age. Little did he know that a career would emerge from this passion (and that it would not, sadly, involve being a professional racecar driver). In over fourteen years, he got behind the wheel of several hundred vehicles and in the offices of the most important car publications in his homeland.
Full profile


Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories