The Beijing Traffic Management Bureau yesterday issued new licenses for self-driving vehicle testing in the Chinese capital, with tech giant Tencent receiving authorization to operate an autonomous vehicle on designated roads for the first time.
According to the Beijing Innovation Center for Mobility Intelligence, 34 self-driving vehicles have qualified for road testing since the city began issuing licenses last December. Baidu has twenty-five vehicles; Daimler AG, Didi Chuxing and Pony.ai have two apiece; while NIO, BAIC BJEV, and Tencent each have one.
Self-driving road testing is used to evaluate driving actions such as steering, shifting and braking in real world environments. Researchers also test their vehicles’ monitoring of its surroundings, signaling and lane changes, network connections, etc. As of this August self-driving vehicles have safely traveled over 45,000 kilometres in a test area covering 123 kilometres on 44 Beijing roads.
Tencent has positioned itself as a “complete software and service provider for automated driving systems” and its self-driving division is already providing smart driving tech and services to automakers. Tencent Chairman and CEO Ma Huateng says the company will cooperate with government and enterprises to build a digital ecosystem, promote smart industry innovation and development, and work toward a comprehensive intelligent transportation and travel system.
Author: Herin Zhao | Editor: Michael Sarazen