British automaker takes next step in autonomous vehicle development.

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has released details of its connected vehicle testing, commencing new trials as part of the UK CITE Project.

The British automotive group says it has deployed a fleet of connected cars – based on current models like the Jaguar F-Pace, Land Rover Discovery and Range Rover Sport – with an array of communication systems that can 'talk' to other vehicles and compatible infrastructure.

JLR says its connected car trials are part of the £7.1 million ($12.68m) UK CITE Project, which is geared towards creating Britain's first fully connected infrastructure in the lead-up to autonomous vehicles.

Some 40 miles (64km) of road will be fitted out with wireless technologies – including stretches of the M40, M42, A45 and A46 roads in the UK – for the implementation of vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2X) systems.

"To realise the full benefit of self-driving cars, we need to understand the infrastructure that's required to support them," said Colin Lee, JLR's connectivity manager.

"Connectivity not only takes us a step closer to making self-driving cars a reality but it also creates the platform to bring more connected safety features to our customers within the next few years."

"We're working with some fantastic global experts across industry and academia and we're eager to take the project into this next phase of testing," he added.

JLR says it will be testing a range of connected features, including emergency electronic brake light warning (EEBL), emergency vehicle warning (EVW), along with in-vehicle signage (IVS) necessary for roadworks warning (RWW) and traffic condition warning (TCW).

Connected vehicle systems are designed to work with both manual and autonomous driving, and add another layer of safety for drivers – giving vehicles the ability to 'see' further down the road and 'talk' to other vehicles.