Toyota is an auto manufacturer. And like all auto manufacturers currently in business, autonomous cars are a huge area of concern for it. The Toyota Research Institute has recently debuted its new second-gen autonomous car that demonstrates the advances made by the company in the field. And, it is a Lexus!

Yup. The company debuted a brand new Lexus at its Prius Challenge event in Sonoma, California. The vehicle demonstrated some of the new technology the company has managed to put together. The new vehicle is something of a high point for TRI, considering that it is the first self-driving test platform built entirely by the research organization.

The car will be deployed to help Toyota test its advances in autonomous technology. The car includes are the latest in self-driving including, drive-by-wire interface, layered LiDAR, radar and camera sensors. The company has crowded several technologies into the car and it will be interesting to see how they work out in tandem with each other.

Meanwhile, Toyota was one of the early starters. The company showed of its first vehicle at CES 2013. The Lexus comes after almost 4 years and undoubtedly, brings some major improvements. The car will apparently be deployed to test two of Toyota’s systems — namely, the  Chauffer and Guardian. While Chauffer is level 5 autonomous and features a system that theoretically at least, can drive completely without supervision, the Guardian system comes with highly advanced driver assistance features.

The company is planning to double on driver for now. Full autonomy is still a few years away. Our roads, our regulations and our own mindsets need to be conditioned properly before full autonomous cars occupy our roads. Until then though, systems like the Guardian which can help the driver avoid potentially life threatening situations, are very likely to pervade the market and pave the way for the future.

You can check out the new Lexus LS 600hL in the video below:

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