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This Audi RS7 Just Drove Itself Around A Track At 150MPH

Illustration for article titled This Audi RS7 Just Drove Itself Around A Track At 150MPH

Audi showcased its new Audi RS7 piloted driving concept prior to the finale of the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters (DTM) by having it circle the Hockenheimring without a driver at high speeds.

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Illustration for article titled This Audi RS7 Just Drove Itself Around A Track At 150MPH

The self-driving concept Audi RS7 reached speeds of close to 150 miles per hour on the Hockenheimring track while a full crowd watch from the stands. Audi tried to broadcast the run in its entirety on its online channel Audi MediaTV, but the servers crashed making watching it live impossible.

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Unfortunately, the embedding function is also having some issues. However, if you visit the Audi MediaTV website, you can watch the highlights. Audi had cameras in the cockpit which will allow viewers to "virtually" ride along.

The car will be pushed to its physical limit – while piloted with high precision and accuracy to within centimeters.

Illustration for article titled This Audi RS7 Just Drove Itself Around A Track At 150MPH
Illustration for article titled This Audi RS7 Just Drove Itself Around A Track At 150MPH
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Illustration for article titled This Audi RS7 Just Drove Itself Around A Track At 150MPH

Get an explanation of how this was done with this video from GTspirit.com:

Images via Audi, video via GTspirit.com/YouTube.

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DISCUSSION

JohnPersing
JohnPersing

I'd accept that the route was pre-programmed in the Audi. The car would still have to be aware of its position and make adjustments. The most impressive turn was the turn after the hairpin, but it looked like the Audi took it "safely". There was much talk by the commentator of "optimal line" but it was clear that the Audi could have found a fast way around by positioning five or ten feet to the left or right along certain straights.

This would have been more interesting if:

1) The Audi did several laps, and by a learning algorithm tried to improve it lap times by specifically experimenting with lines

2) The Audi used a little bit of curbing

3) The Audi actually made a mistake and learned from that

4) The Audi got a little bit of tire squeal in one or two turns

5) The Audi circulated it "perfect lap" a few times, then somebody threw an OTC on a straightaway and see an adjustment out of the Audi.