Automated vehicles that communicate implicitly: examining the use of lateral position within the lane

Anirudh Sripada, Pavlo Bazilinskyy, Joost de Winter*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)
28 Downloads (Pure)


It may be necessary to introduce new modes of communication between automated vehicles (AVs) and pedestrians. This research proposes using the AV’s lateral deviation within the lane to communicate if the AV will yield to the pedestrian. In an online experiment, animated video clips depicting an approaching AV were shown to participants. Each of 1104 participants viewed 28 videos twice in random order. The videos differed in deviation magnitude, deviation onset, turn indicator usage, and deviation-yielding mapping. Participants had to press and hold a key as long as they felt safe to cross, and report the perceived intuitiveness of the AV’s behaviour after each trial. The results showed that the AV moving towards the pedestrian to indicate yielding and away to indicate continuing driving was more effective than the opposite combination. Furthermore, the turn indicator was regarded as intuitive for signalling that the AV will yield. Practitioner Summary: Future automated vehicles (AVs) may have to communicate with vulnerable road users. Many researchers have explored explicit communication via text messages and led strips on the outside of the AV. The present study examines the viability of implicit communication via the lateral movement of the AV.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1416-1428
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Automated driving
  • crowdsourcing
  • implicit communication
  • vehicle movement
  • vulnerable road users

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