We reached out to Volvo for answers about what went wrong here, and the company’s response was also a bit disturbing. Volvo spokesperson Johan Larsson explained that the video is mislabeled. He said the car is not attempting to self-park. “It seems they are trying to demonstrate pedestrian detection and auto-braking,” said Larsson by email. “Unfortunately, there were some issues in the way the test was conducted.”
The main issue, said Larsson, is that it appears that the people who bought this Volvo did not pay for the “Pedestrian detection functionality,” which is a feature that costs more money.
“The Volvo XC60 comes with City Safety as a standard feature however this does not include the Pedestrian detection functionality,” said Larsson. The “City Safety system” kicks in when someone is in stop-and-go traffic, helping the driver avoid rear ending another car while driving slowly, or under 30 mph.