This study proposes a vehicle-following control system for personal electric vehicles (EV). Recently, projects aimed at using personal vehicles to solve vehicle transportation problems associated with overcrowding in cities and depopulation in mountain villages have been under way in several regions in Japan. This study was conducted to contribute to improving mobility in depopulated regions by applying vehicle-following control technology to personal vehicles. In this paper, the issues associated with introducing personal vehicles in depopulated regions are summarized by explaining the background of personal vehicles and that of depopulated regions in Japan.
Related studies that we have conducted to address these issues are summarized. The details of vehicle-following control technology that is targeted at controlling vehicle-to-vehicle time using wireless communication are explained. Evaluation experiments conducted using small EVs are described. The results of the evaluation experiments confirm the efficient following performance achieved with the proposed vehicle-following control system.