The U.S. and Europe aren’t the only ones who have their sights set on getting autonomous taxi services on the road. Nissan has plans to test fully-autonomous taxis on the roads of Japan in 2018, hoping to have services up and running by the early 20’s. The experience Nissan wants to offer is going to slightly differ from what you heard about Uber, Lyft or GM.
Nissan is partnering with a technology company called DeNA to develop an app that will handle everything from pickup to payment and drop-off. Something not hinted at by other similar services is that you’ll be able to choose the route to your destination, whether it’s the quickest or a more scenic route.
There are plans to start with a public field test for the coined “Easy Ride” service in Yokohama. The cars used will likely be the LEAF EVs, which have already been tested on British streets. While that may be, Japanese roads may prove to be a bit more difficult to navigate. With the 2020 Olympics taking place in Tokyo, they hope to have all the kinks worked out by then. There are sign-ups available for test rides through the 15th of January.