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Poor markings and uneven signage on the 3 million miles of paved roads in the United States are forcing automakers to develop more sophisticated sensors and maps to compensate, industry executives say.Tesla, Volvo, Mercedes, Audi and others are fielding vehicles that can drive, change lanes and park without human help.In other developed countries, greater standardization of road signs and markings makes it easier for robot cars to navigate. Mercedes says the "drive pilot" system found in its recently unveiled E Class 2017 sedans works even with no lane markings. The system – which incorporates 23 sensors – takes into account guard rails, barriers, and other cars to keep cars in their lanes up to 135 kilometers per hour, under "suitable circumstances". On a good road in daylight, cameras installed around a car are sufficient to distinguish road lines, traffic lights and signs. But without lane markings, the car needs more technology to judge its position. Automakers are looking to pay $50 per car for such maps, which may be well below the actual price, said Warrington.
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