Creating a Progressive Strategy

Map films for the Electro Gyrocator. The user places a map over the CRT.

<< 1. Behind the Success of the CVCC Engine
<< 2. Creating a Progressive Strategy
<< 3. A Gas-rate Gyro Comprising Just Eight Parts
<< 4. Gyrocator Development: A Path Strewn with Difficulties
<< 5. Could the Map Be Wrong?
<< 6. The Final Test: From Suzuka to Tokyo
<< 7. The Challenge of Digitization
<< 8. "A System That Cannot Lie"
<< 9. Analog to Digital: A Three-year Detour Leads to the Goal

Tagami was resolute: "The things to which we are passionately committed demand an environment where we have the freedom to work, without unnecessary restrictions. If we let go of our engines, Honda will cease to be. Accordingly, the protection of our engines-indeed, the company itself-means we must have our own car-electronics technology."

Determined to make it happen, Tagami began developing a comprehensive strategy for engine electronics. He wanted an overall picture as to what technological advancement Honda had to achieve and how, in order for the company to gain a foothold in that area of endeavor. A hastily drawn-up strategy spelled out the future direction of cars, in tandem evolution with electronics technology. The key phrase for this was "intelligent automobile."

The strategy made use of a basic outline, as follows: Progress in electronics technology would facilitate the control of engines and transmissions, leading to automatic cruise control. Automation would further advance to the area of steering control. Eventually, the driver would be able to input a destination on the map, at which the car would automatically select the optimal route and take him there. The ultimate goal of development would be a fully automated car that could drive itself.

Kume called his concept ACE, for "Automatically Adaptive and Creative Electronically Controlled System." It was a concept that would eventually result in the development of PGM-F1 systems and anti-lock braking systems.

Travel route guidance was one of the features outlined in the ACE strategy, However, it did not foresee the sophisticated systems of navigation with which Honda is now familiar. To take the concept to that level would require further study, many new ideas and a great deal of effort.
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