These advances in autonomous vehicle technology are built on leading-edge advanced active safety systems, Taub told the Intelligent Transport Systems World Congress in Orlando on Sunday.

Sensors, radars, portable communication devices, GPS and cameras are the tools that supply critical information to the driver and the automobile’s computer system. Combined with digital maps, the same technologies will allow the driver to let the vehicle concentrate on driving while he does something else.  

He commented: ‘The technologies we’re developing will provide an added convenience by partially or even completely taking over the driving duties. The primary goal, though, is safety. Future generation safety systems will eliminate the crash altogether by interceding on behalf of drivers before they’re even aware of a hazardous situation.

‘In the coming years, we believe the industry will experience a dramatic leap in active safety systems, and, hopefully, a dramatic decline in injuries and fatalities on our roadways. GM has made a commitment to be at the forefront of this development.’