To highlight its latest electronic driver assist system being introduced initially in Japan, Nissan has taken a novel approach by applying similar technology in a golf ball able to find its own way to the hole on a putting green.
Nissan in July revealed ProPilot 2.0 which allows a vehicle to travel along select highways in Japan hands-free. Like Cadillac’s Super Cruise system, it relies on numerous sensors and cameras as well as highly detailed maps and the vehicle’s navigation system to guide it.
Nissan has now applied similar technology in a golf ball. Instead of a navigation system, an overhead camera is used to detect the position of the ball relative to the hole. When the ball is hit, a monitoring system calculates the correct route based on the ball’s movement and adjusts its trajectory via an electric motor inside the ball.
Anyone visiting Nissan’s headquarters in Yokohama, Japan, between the dates of August 29 and September 1 will be able to test the golf ball.
The ProPilot 2.0 system is available in Nissan’s updated Skyline sedan sold in Japan. It’s still only a driver assist system as it only works in a single lane and the driver needs to pay attention when using it. For example, when the system detects a change in the road ahead or a slower vehicle that can be passed, it will prompt the driver in a timely fashion using audio and visual warnings to take back control. A camera in the cabin monitors the driver for attentiveness.