A new UK research project will investigate how cities can incorporate autonomous vehicles.

Over 30 months, the ServCity project’s five partners – Nissan, the Connected Places Catapult, TRL, Hitachi and the University of Nottingham – will seek to develop a blueprint that directly tackles the barriers to deploying autonomous vehicles in UK cities.

The project will include test simulations, end-user experience research and real-world trials, and follows on from the HumanDrive project, which looked at autonomous driving on rural roads and motorways.

ServCity is being jointly funded by industry and the government.

Business and industry minister Nadhim Zahawi said: “If society is to enjoy the benefits of self-driving vehicles, we need to ensure the technology can safely master a complex and lively modern city, with all its obstacles.

“This project, backed by government funding, will not only help make autonomous vehicles more user friendly, but also give users confidence that they can respond quickly and safely and to all types of challenges they face on the roads.”

Nissan project manager Bob Bateman said: “We are extremely proud to be a part of the ServCity project and are excited to trial our 100% electric Nissan Leafs as test vehicles. 

“Our Nissan Intelligent Mobility strategy strives to achieve a mobility future that is more electric, more autonomous and more connected and we look forward to working in collaboration with ServCity’s other partners to achieve this.”