Pilot Assist.... outright dangerous?
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    1. #1
      Junior Member ThomasHej's Avatar
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      Pilot Assist.... outright dangerous?

      Help me here folks...

      I love my XC90 T8 2017, we can discuss battery range and what have we, but the car is just so nice... I tried out a Tesla model X P100D the other day, and yes, is does the acceleration without any comparison and it's autopilot seems more advanced than ours in the XC90, but that's It! Everything else is by order of magnitude better in the Volvo.

      I like to call the Tesla a two trick pony.

      We will never get the acceleration, nor does anybody really need it, so we are down to one trick which I really would like in my XC90, a better (safer) autopilot.

      I don't know if I'm the only one, but the XC90 autopilot does a SILENT disconnect when it looses track of white lines and/or the direction of the road. Without ANY WARNING is degrades into distance keeping cruise control with no directional control. No auditable feedback, just the green steering wheel turning gray... DANGER!!!

      I'm also a certified pilot on commercial jets, and in the one I'm flying, an uncommanded disconnect of the autopilot has first priority (It outrank fire, engine failure or everything else) and comes with all the bells and whistles there are... The logic is, that the pilot should ALWAYS be aware of the level, if automation active...

      Am I the only one to notice this flaw in the XC90?

      Oddly enough, there is a warning when the disconnect happen due to lack of human hands on the steering wheel.

      ...and yes, the Tesla has this one done correct. Damn!


      Thomas
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    3. #2
      Junior Member Heimdall's Avatar
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      You have a valid observation there.

      On a side note. I would check Tesla again.
      They are issuing a press release soon about the latest accident in California involving what I guess is an S models not sure, which is creating a big mess now with DOT and CHIPS.
      Just saw it on the news this morning


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    4. #3
      Member inteller's Avatar
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      the steering wheel goes from green to grey. If you appropriately got the HUD when you bought the car you will see that plainly in front of you.
      this is not autopilot on a plane, this is pilot ASSIST. You are still in control of the car and your hands have to be on the steering wheel. it isn't going to blare at you because it correctly assumes you still have control over the car.
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    6. #4
      Quote Originally Posted by inteller View Post
      the steering wheel goes from green to grey. If you appropriately got the HUD when you bought the car you will see that plainly in front of you.
      this is not autopilot on a plane, this is pilot ASSIST. You are still in control of the car and your hands have to be on the steering wheel. it isn't going to blare at you because it correctly assumes you still have control over the car.
      I donít understand your response. ďIf you appropriately get HUDĒ? Are you saying that you would have optioned a car only with HUD? Maybe he didnít want the HUD?

      When you respond, you seem to condescend. This is a community where people share ideas, not shout to get off their lawn. You have countless postings on this forum and Iíve seen many insightful posts from you. But you also seem to have many inflammatory posts as well. Maybe you should consider the tone of your posts in the future.
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    7. #5
      Junior Member ThomasHej's Avatar
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      @inteller: I do have the HUD, but I still believe the design is flawed (if not outright dangerous). My wife dislikes the HUD (and if she knew how, she would turn it off)... :-)

      I believe the purpose of the Pilot Assist is to alleviate the driver in most circumstances, that be for a short while (15 seconds hands off), or just as a keep eye on road and hands on wheel and be relaxed alert (if such a term exists). I believe the silent disconnect is a bug - why on earth would that be "by design", I can't see a single reason that one would like to have the disconnect being silent. And if so, it is strange that the other modes of disconnect does have a sound. (e.g. I do not register hands on steering wheel).

      Wonder if Volvo is reading this forum... Does anybody know?


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      The pilot knows a thing or two about safety! Major flaw in design not to have a more ample warning when PA2 disengages!

    9. #7
      Member partridge's Avatar
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      Iíve been on about this issue for a while now. Itís frankly horrible design and very unsafe.

      Yet there always seems to be somebody who claims that itís better for the disconnect to be silent.

      If youíre gonna make the argument that your hands are on the wheel then at least have the wheel vibrate.

      In Pilot assist mode you have essentially offloaded the fine work of lane keeping to the system. It should let you know in no uncertain terms that it is not able to continue. Turning a light from green to grey is not adequate.


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      Agree an audible warning would be helpful. And safer. Though because I know Level 2 is far from autonomous I donít put much faith in the system and therefore find myself more anxious to use it. Thus I donít use it accept as a novelty.

      This is at the crux of issues behind whether a car maker will ever introduce level 3 and level 4 pilot assist (level 5 is full automation). The idea of Level 2 is not to let the driver become a disengaged passenger (hence the hand on wheel requirement). Levels 3 and 4 blur lines to the level of automation potentially leading consumers to believe their car is autonomous when it is not.
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    11. #9
      Junior Member Snafu's Avatar
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      Agreed here. I can't say I really use the PA except as a parlor trick to do the "look mom, no hands". I messed around with it on the highway when I first got the car, and it did a really nice job. For the most part, I kept a hand on the wheel though, except when testing the disconnect for not having a hand on the wheel. The Tesla system is much better, but I can't comment on how it disengages as it never happened to me. I also think just the green steering wheel going away on the dash and the HUD isn't really adequate. On top of that, if you are fixated on the HUD instead of looking at the road further ahead and your surroundings, you have big problems. In addition, any sunglasses worth a damn unfortunately completely make the HUD invisible in all the cars I have had with it.
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    12. #10
      Junior Member SG1's Avatar
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      While I agree that an audible signal would be nice, I think it would encourage more reckless driver behaviour. It is NOT an autonomous vehicle, you are SUPPOSED to keep your hands on the wheel, AND you are supposed to be paying attention and driving. So there's no problem when it disengages, because I KNOW when it disengages.

      People are expecting too much automation from something that is NOT designed to be that, yet.

      That is the problem in the the recent Tesla accident in California. That driver did not have his hands on the steering wheel and he was NOT paying attention even when he complained about that EXACT off-ramp barricade 5 or 6 times to his brother previously. If he knew it was a problem why would he not be extra careful? Also, that off-ramp barricade was recently the scene of a prior accident and the buffer zone that normally protects drivers was no longer there. That's even MORE reason to be paying attention while driving.

      Autonomous vehicles are coming, but they are not here yet. Everyday commuters should NOT be pushing the current technology beyond what it is specifically designed for. I'm happy to leave that to trained test pilots in carefully controlled situations while they develop the tech for the safety of the masses. Regular civilians who recklessly try to push the boundaries of existing technology on open public roads are putting themselves as well as other drivers like me and my family at risk.
      Last edited by SG1; 04-02-2018 at 12:51 PM.
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    13. #11
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      Yes, I mentioned it already quite few times: this is is SERIOUS safety glitch - silent disconnecting of PA. Volvo does not seem to bother ... But we are blessed with completely useless loud signals: like after 2 minutes of using your throttle pedal you suddenly get a loud chord message - "adaptive cruise control overdriven" or something like that. Complete BS...
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      I won't use it.
      I wonder how many people will use it for "just one quick text"?

    15. #13
      In all cases, it is on the driver to remain attentive. A semi-autonomous vehicle is not yet a replacement for an actual responsible person behind the wheel of the 2+ ton killing machine. But, given that the technology is there on these (and other) vehicles, it does seem to make sense from a safety perspective that there be some type of audible signal that the Pilot Assist has disengaged. Since it seems like a software adjustment, maybe Volvo will hear people's suggestions and add an audible signal.
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    16. #14
      Junior Member Willybz's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by huntpsu1 View Post
      Agree an audible warning would be helpful. And safer. Though because I know Level 2 is far from autonomous I donít put much faith in the system and therefore find myself more anxious to use it. Thus I donít use it accept as a novelty.

      This is at the crux of issues behind whether a car maker will ever introduce level 3 and level 4 pilot assist (level 5 is full automation). The idea of Level 2 is not to let the driver become a disengaged passenger (hence the hand on wheel requirement). Levels 3 and 4 blur lines to the level of automation potentially leading consumers to believe their car is autonomous when it is not.
      +1 .... I like the pilot assist a lot and now use it most of the time on the highway. It reduces the fatigue of the countless small corrections, keeps my hands on the wheel, and alerts me through the wheel if the car is drifting outside without using a turn signal. I agree an audible alert would be better when it shuts off and I hope Volvo is listening, but in its current form, it is doing a LOT very well, to the point where it is more than just a novelty. Even in its current form, it improves safety significantly.
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      Good topic comes back now and then.

      If PA disengages when your hand is on steering, it assumes you are in control, as always. So it doesn't need to 'ding' on you every now and then.

      If PA detected your hand is not on steering, it tries to remind you, hence the chime.

      PA is indeed dangerous, as dangerous as when it doesn't exist. This is a correct message from PA. Tesla accidents demonstrated this a few times.

      When PA disengages, in its current capability, the car is usually already going out of lane. It is too late to alarm driver to take control.
      If PA can predict it is safe in 3 seconds and will disengage after 3 seconds or longer, it should 'ding' you, for the goodness.
      But it currently can't predict this 3 second safe hand-over time....
      Last edited by FusionRedXC60; 04-02-2018 at 01:01 PM.
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    18. #16
      Junior Member yluong's Avatar
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      Audible warning for PA disengagement due to road condition should be easily fixed thru software update. How can we request that to Volvo?

    19. #17
      Member partridge's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by FusionRedXC60 View Post

      When PA disengages, in its current capability, the car is usually already going out of lane. It is too late to alarm driver to take control.
      If PA can predict it is safe in 3 seconds and will disengage after 3 seconds or longer, it should 'ding' you, for the goodness.
      But it currently can't predict this 3 second safe hand-over time....
      This simply isnít true. You can be driving in traffic on pilot assist and it will just lose track of the lane. Itís still engaged and when it finds the lane again it will reassume steering assist. I find it will just lose track randomly and even though you have your hands on the wheel your first warning that it has done so will be the car starting to wander with the road crown.

      To be specific. The car has lost lane tracking. It is not out of lane. It just doesnít know where the lane is. It should be polite for the system to warn the driver that it will not be providing assistance.

      This is on the same level as having lane departure warning. The system warns you that you are about to leave the lane and nudges you back in. Literally nobody is making the argument that you should have been paying attention and have had your hands on the wheel keeping it in the lane so obviously there should be no lane departure warning or assist because obviously you should have noticed you are out of the lane already and that having those features just encourages you to not pay attention.

      The car has noticed a situation. It should alert you. Period.


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      Quote Originally Posted by partridge View Post
      This simply isnít true. You can be driving in traffic on pilot assist and it will just lose track of the lane. Itís still engaged and when it finds the lane again it will reassume steering assist. I find it will just lose track randomly and even though you have your hands on the wheel your first warning that it has done so will be the car starting to wander with the road crown.

      To be specific. The car has lost lane tracking. It is not out of lane. It just doesnít know where the lane is. It should be polite for the system to warn the driver that it will not be providing assistance.

      This is on the same level as having lane departure warning. The system warns you that you are about to leave the lane and nudges you back in. Literally nobody is making the argument that you should have been paying attention and have had your hands on the wheel keeping it in the lane so obviously there should be no lane departure warning or assist because obviously you should have noticed you are out of the lane already and that having those features just encourages you to not pay attention.

      The car has noticed a situation. It should alert you. Period.


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      On straight road you can call it "lose track of lane". On a curve, it will be brutal "out of lane" within a 1/10 of second.
      Pretty dangerous, yeah, I tried with caution and it is indeed like this.

      And in the situation when PA loses track of lane, I don't know if Lane Keep Assist still works. They should be based on same lane tracking technology.
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    21. #19
      Member partridge's Avatar
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      Pilot Assist.... outright dangerous?

      Quote Originally Posted by FusionRedXC60 View Post
      On straight road you can call it "lose track of lane". On a curve, it will be brutal "out of lane" within a 1/10 of second.
      Pretty dangerous, yeah, I tried with caution and it is indeed like this.
      That still doesnít excuse not having a warning of some sort.

      Lane departure warning warns you when you have already left the lane. Just be cause itís too late, doesnít mean there shouldnít be a warning.

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      Last edited by partridge; 04-02-2018 at 01:20 PM.
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      PA2 works great if you use it as designed. As plenty of people already mentioned, it is not meant to be an auto pilot function.

      The two instances in which I find it most useful are:

      Bumper to bumper traffic - just letting the car maintain a safe distance from the car in front and keeping itself in the lane.

      Long drives on straight-ish freeways. Obviously you still need to drive the car and be paying attention when you're traveling at 80 mph on a freeway, but I've found that where I'd usually be concentrating at 100%, I can ratchet it down to 80% and still be comfortable that I'm driving safely and I'm ready to react if I need to. It doesn't sound like a big difference, but I get much less tired on long drives (say, 4 hour + drives) than I would if not using PA2.

      I've never had any issues with PA2 disengaging without me being aware of it, even without an audible warning.

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      Quote Originally Posted by partridge View Post
      That still doesnít excuse not having a warning of some sort.

      Lane departure warning warns you when you have already left the lane. Just be cause itís too late, doesnít mean there shouldnít be a warning.

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      If there was a warning, and people will rely on this warning, even on curves, and just get no time to correct the steering.
      The BIG warning PA gives you right now, is that you know it is dangerous beforehand.
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    24. #22
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      Pilot Assist.... outright dangerous?

      Telsa isnít much better Iím afraid.

      Hereís somebody recreating the recent Tesla crash.

      The Tesla is tooling along on autopilot. Loses track of lane guidance briefly. Flashing screen border and you can see the blue lane markers disappear. Sees the left lane marker and follows it, then reacquires the right lane marker.

      Unfortunately due to poor road markings the left lane marker it follows is actually the left border of the gore point leading into a crash barrier and the right lane marker is the right border, so it mistakenly guides right into the barrier.



      This is scary as hell. Itís like a Tesla trap.
      Last edited by R-Pow3R3d; 04-02-2018 at 09:29 PM.
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    25. #23
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      maybe on the redesigned XC90 they will have klaxons that goes off on every Pilot Assist disengage along with some strobe lights shooting from the instrument panel.

      Last edited by inteller; 04-02-2018 at 01:51 PM.
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    26. #24
      That's a perfect example why a driver needs to remain attentive while using these types of systems.

      I haven't used the Pilot Assist in our Volvo much, but my Infiniti Q50 has a lower-level of lane keeping assistance and will navigate straight lines and very mild curves. Every so often, I'll drive to Houston from Austin and some of the road is extremely straight with low traffic. I'll let the car "drive" on some of those stretches, but never keep my attention from the road for more than a couple of seconds and always keep my hands near the wheel to be able to quickly counteract any misjudgements by the car. The Infiniti tends to follow the outside line more than the inside line, so exit ramps can be problematic.
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      you know what the biggest flaw of PA2 is? basing the entire technology off the expectation that local governments have/allocate the funding and will properly mark and maintain road striping.
      Last edited by inteller; 04-02-2018 at 01:52 PM.
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      Quote Originally Posted by partridge View Post
      Telsa isnít much better Iím afraid.

      Hereís somebody recreating the recent Tesla crash.

      The Tesla is tooling along on autopilot. Loses track of lane guidance briefly. Flashing screen border and you can see the blue lane markers disappear. Sees the left lane marker and follows it, then reacquires the right lane marker.

      Unfortunately due to poor road markings the left lane marker it follows is actually the left border of the gore point leading into a crash barrier and the right lane marker is the right border, so it mistakenly guides right into the barrier.

      https://youtu.be/6QCF8tVqM3I

      This is scary as hell. Itís like a Tesla trap.
      Tesla does better in lane keeping in general but it makes people think it is more reliable than it is, which is actually more dangerous.
      The typical Tesla accidents were that people are over-confident on it. There are always some traps on road, for human or computer driving cars.
      PA is not as good, but it doesn't pretend to be good.

      And why Tesla relies on left lane mark even when driving on left lane? It is dangerous in general. Human drivers all know to avoid stay close to left lane mark.
      Last edited by FusionRedXC60; 04-02-2018 at 01:58 PM.
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      Junior Member Snafu's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by partridge View Post
      Telsa isnít much better Iím afraid.

      Hereís somebody recreating the recent Tesla crash.

      The Tesla is tooling along on autopilot. Loses track of lane guidance briefly. Flashing screen border and you can see the blue lane markers disappear. Sees the left lane marker and follows it, then reacquires the right lane marker.

      Unfortunately due to poor road markings the left lane marker it follows is actually the left border of the gore point leading into a crash barrier and the right lane marker is the right border, so it mistakenly guides right into the barrier.

      https://youtu.be/6QCF8tVqM3I

      This is scary as hell. Itís like a Tesla trap.
      Yes, that is messed up for sure! All the wonky road marking around the NYC metro I always felt would throw these things for a loop, mostly around construction areas. Added in with the inability of the system to avoid potholes, I'm totally cool controlling the car myself!
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      It would be interesting to read this thread in 20 years.

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      Quote Originally Posted by partridge View Post
      Telsa isnít much better Iím afraid.

      Hereís somebody recreating the recent Tesla crash.

      The Tesla is tooling along on autopilot. Loses track of lane guidance briefly. Flashing screen border and you can see the blue lane markers disappear. Sees the left lane marker and follows it, then reacquires the right lane marker.

      Unfortunately due to poor road markings the left lane marker it follows is actually the left border of the gore point leading into a crash barrier and the right lane marker is the right border, so it mistakenly guides right into the barrier.

      https://youtu.be/6QCF8tVqM3I

      This is scary as hell. Itís like a Tesla trap.
      But Tesla's driver display is impressive man when autopilot is on.

      Wish Volvo allowed front cameras to be operational at higher speeds, at least up to 100km/h.



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      Quote Originally Posted by Seti View Post
      But Tesla's driver display is impressive man when autopilot is on.

      Wish Volvo allowed front cameras to be operational at higher speeds, at least up to 100km/h.



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      But drivers are not supposed to watch driver display while driving....

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    33. #31
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      Quote Originally Posted by FusionRedXC60 View Post
      But drivers are not supposed to watch driver display while driving....

      Rolling, Fusion Red XC60 T8
      But occasional stare isn't bad driving just as we look at the map while driving

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      Quote Originally Posted by Seti View Post
      But occasional stare isn't bad driving just as we look at the map while driving

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      Yah, occasionally stare and it shows on track within center of lane, until it "bangs", like in the video above.
      Rolling, Fusion Red - 2018 XC60 - T8
      Running to retire, 2000 V70XC 237344 miles [2020-10-13]

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      Quote Originally Posted by FusionRedXC60 View Post
      Yah, occasionally stare and it shows on track within center of lane, until it "bangs", like in the video above.
      My Jaguar allows it and I've never driven recklessly because of it, nor have I heard of many Jaguar drivers crashing

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      T8 Inscription - With almost all bells and whistles, bar leather on dash and upper fascia - Regretting not having them

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      And for driver display, we trust the info on it, such as numbers, lines, maps.

      However, lane keeping info, which so far is still not trustable...
      Rolling, Fusion Red - 2018 XC60 - T8
      Running to retire, 2000 V70XC 237344 miles [2020-10-13]

    37. #35
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      Quote Originally Posted by FusionRedXC60 View Post
      And for driver display, we trust the info on it, such as numbers, lines, maps.

      However, lane keeping info, which so far is still not trustable...


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      T8 Inscription - With almost all bells and whistles, bar leather on dash and upper fascia - Regretting not having them

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