Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) can improve - or even revolutionise - how the vehicles we use interact with each other and with road infrastructure.
ACEA actively contributes to discussions on ITS and aims to accelerate and coordinate the deployment of the technology in road transport, including for interfaces with other transport modes. Intelligent information and communication technologies will play a major role in bringing this technology to the roads. ITS has the potential to increase the efficiency of road use, improve safety outcomes and improve the environmental performance of vehicles.
While nominally ITS may refer to a range of transport modes, under the EU Directive 2010/40/EU, ITS is generally defined to apply to road/vehicle interfaces for road transport.
ITS systems include such things as the eCall emergency notification system, road traffic management systems for varying speed limits or traffic flow, enforcement and collision prevention.
The market penetration of new systems is rising gradually, but further comprehensive deployment requires investment in technology both at vehicle fleet level and in the infrastructure they use.
Legal issues, data protection and public acceptance must also be considered. As the technology develops, it will find its way on to more and more vehicles. Further, as the technology evolves, some ITS systems will play gradually more responsible roles in the way vehicles and traffic operate, with potential ramifications as regards who has final responsibility.
Some 75% of all goods are transported by road, and road networks are not infinitely expandable. However, with forward-thinking investments in ITS, road transport could be made faster, cleaner and safer.