Li Auto Max version owners will receive a major smart driving upgrade this month

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Li Auto held its 2024 Intelligent Driving Summer Conference on the evening of July 5. The major announcement was the nationwide opening of NOA to all drivers with the Max version of Li models. This now uses a VLM (visual language model) and is no longer dependent on mapping or prior information. Furthermore Li Auto claimed that its driving assistance system helped users avoid 360,000 potential accidents in the first half of 2024 and that the false trigger rate was less than one time per 300,000 km.

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The version 6 OTA will be pushed to drivers of Li Auto Max version cars this month and will include the new version of NOA, AES (Automatic Emergency Steering), and improvements to AEB (Automatic Emergency Braking). Initially, the system was trialed with 1,000 experienced users in May this year and was then expanded to 10,000 in June. After the new OTA 240,000 AD Max owners will be able to use the system.

System in use at an intersection

With the new smart driving system for Li Auto the NOA no longer relies on high-precision maps or prior information. New architecture consists of an end-to-end VLM (Visual Language Model) and a world model. The VLM has strong logical thinking ability and can understand complex road situations, navigation maps, and traffic rules. Along with coping with difficult or even unknown scenarios It can build and test its capabilities in a virtual environment built on the real world. The end result is a system that can make inference calculations more efficiently and drive in a more human-like manner.

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Helping drive the new system is Nobel Prize-winning Daniel Kahneman’s theory of fast and slow systems. In the context of smart driving, this has a fast system, or system one, which is good at handling simple tasks and is formed by experience and habit and this is capable of dealing with 95% of routine scenarios when driving a car. On the other hand, the slow system or system 2 is good at logical reasoning, complex analysis of situations, and has a calculation ability, that with humans is through deeper understanding and learning. This can be used to solve complex or unknown traffic scenarios. When driving a vehicle this would usually account for about 5% of daily driving. In Li’s VLM, system 1 and system 2 work together to ensure high efficiency in most scenarios and this forms the basis of an efficient end-to-end model.

System in use on a country road

What this all means in practice is it no longer relies on high-precision maps or prior information and has joint spatiotemporal planning to predict the interaction between the car and other vehicles, screen out the optical obstacle avoidance trajectory, and bring a smoother obstacle bypass experience. It allows the system to operate on roads across the country including narrow roads and country roads. Using the sensors, including Lidar, it builds up an ultra-long line sight for navigation and road selection which allows for higher perception accuracy.

AEB has been expanded into a low-speed environment and it now provides 360-degree active safety protection for parking and low-speed driving scenarios. Complex basement parking environments can provide a challenge due to obstacles such as pillars, pedestrians, and other vehicles thereby increasing the risk of scratching. Low-speed AEB can effectively identify the risk of forward, backward, and lateral collisions and brake accordingly.

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AEB use during parking in an underground carpark

AEB’s ability to deal with complex intersections has also been improved. This can cope with pedestrians, two-wheelers, and tricycles approaching from the left, right, and front in order to achieve full frontal coverage. Along with activating the brake in a situation where there might be a collision with such users, it will also break if there is a vehicle in the blind spot of the car. Another improvement with AEB is its ability to deal with obstacles at night. For example when driving on a dark highway and there is a stationary container truck without lights or reflectors the AEB system can brake a car equipped with AD Max from a speed of 120 km/h.

AEB intersection scenarios

Li’s Max version cars now also offer AES (Automatic Emergency Steering). Where the car is not able to brake in time the car will now try to steer past the problem and avoid an accident.

Max refers to the versions of Li models equipped with Lidar and includes versions of the L6, L7, L8, L9 and Mega.

Sources: Fast Technology, Autohome, Fast Technology

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