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Shenzhen bus operator joins Baidu, Google in autonomous driving race with public trial

Shenzhen bus operator joins Baidu, Google in autonomous driving race with public trial

Public transit operator Shenzhen Bus Group has started testing four self-driving buses, equipped with software and sensors from Chinese firm Haylion Technologies, on a 1.2km loop in the city’s Futian district.

For the Shenzhen Bus trial, a human driver is stationed at the steering wheel, ready to take over if the vehicle encountered a situation that it cannot automatically handle.

Like electric cars and buses, which China have been actively promoting, self-driving vehicles are expected to be initially adopted by public transit operators on certain fixed routes.

Even if China’s laws allow for fully autonomous buses in future, a driver is still expected to be stationed on these vehicles, much like how automated high-speed trains have staff on-board to ensure the system runs smoothly, said Wu Zhengming, a partner of Frontt Capital Management, which focuses on the autonomous car industry.

Among the major Chinese technology companies working on self-driving vehicles, internet search engine operator Baidu has been investing the most aggressively, while forging key industry alliances.

Source: www.scmp.com
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