Nissan ProPilot Assist is a Level 2 advanced driving assistance system (ADAS) that combines adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go capability and lane-centering assistance. It assists, rather than replaces, a driver.
In the U.S. market, Nissan introduced ProPilot Assist in the 2018 Nissan Rogue, a compact crossover SUV. It uses radar to maintain a safe following distance to traffic ahead automatically, and a camera to identify lane markings and adjust the steering to center the vehicle in the lane of travel. Stop-and-go capability brings the Nissan to a complete stop, and then, when traffic ahead continues, it automatically accelerates the car. This activity lessens fatigue when traveling in heavy traffic.
This original version of Nissan ProPilot Assist only allows for a three-second delay after coming to a stop before it automatically accelerates again. After that period, the driver must manually re-activate the system. Furthermore, the technology lacks smoothness and refinement, exhibiting uneven braking, inconsistent accelerating, and frequent steering adjustments as the radar and camera attempt to maintain proper following distance and keep the vehicle centered in the lane of travel.
Generally, this version of ProPilot Assist feels uncertain of itself, making it hard for a driver to trust its effectiveness.
Fortunately, Nissan introduced a next-generation version of ProPilot Assist with improved radar and camera units. Based on experience testing the new technology in the redesigned 2021 Nissan Rogue, this new version of the technology operates with much greater smoothness, refinement, and consistency. Plus, it adds a more helpful 30-second delay for the stop-and-go function. These changes result in greater driver satisfaction with how the technology works, making it more likely they will trust and use it.
Nissan ProPilot Assist with Navi-link expands upon these new capabilities. In versions of the 2021 Rogue with navigation, ProPilot Assist can consider the map information and the SUV’s GPS coordinates to automatically slow down for curves, freeway interchanges, and freeway off-ramps. For example, if your route requires a switch from one freeway to another and the connecting ramp has a 45-mph speed limit, ProPilot Assist with Navi-link will automatically slow the Rogue to negotiate the ramp safely.
Nissan has announced a new ProPilot Assist 2.0 system for its home market of Japan. This next-generation technology is a hands-free driving version of the ADAS similar to Cadillac Super Cruise, available for use only on limited-access highways. Nissan offers it in its Skyline sedan, sold as the Infiniti Q50 in the U.S. market.
ProPilot Assist 2.0 adds automated steering to its repertoire. As is true with the Cadillac system, the driver must remain alert and attentive at all times. The technology requires the driver to enter a destination into the navigation system, and during the part of the journey involving limited-access freeways, it takes over steering duties from the driver.
To change lanes or pass slower vehicles, the driver must hold the steering wheel. At all times, a monitoring system ensures the driver is paying attention. If the driver is not paying attention, the technology disengages.
Eventually, Nissan is likely to make ProPilot Assist 2.0 available in other global markets.
The information in this article is from Nissan. It was accurate on October 5, 2020, but it may have changed since that date.