What to watch at Wuzhen summit: Baidu to spin its driverless car

Baidu’s driverless car will show up at the third World Internet Conference, to be held in Wuzhen between November 16 and 18, 2016. Wang Jing, senior VP of Baidu and general manager of Baidu’s Autonomous Driving Unit, made the announcement on Thursday at the 7th CKGSB Young Investors Forum of the 2016 Global Innovator Conference.

“This time, instead of a showcase, our driverless car will hit the urban road, with guests sitting in it,” said Wang.

In late 2015, Baidu announced its plan to put driverless vehicles into small-scale commercial use in three years, and into mass production in five years. According to Wang, Baidu’s driverless car has passed one of the five tests for a driver license – the team expects the car to pass all five tests by the time it is put into commercial use.

Additionally, Wang claimed that Baidu was the first to put forward the aim of putting driverless cars into mass production by 2021; 17 other car manufacturers and internet companies on a world scale have now set the same goal.

Believing that 10 years from today, more than 50% of the newly manufactured cars would be driverless cars, Wang pointed out that driverless cars can be economic and efficient. For example, with mass production scheduled to 2021, driverless cars’ average running cost is RMB 1.9 per km (USD 0.45 per mile), according to Wang’s predictions. He said this will be a lower cost than today’s taxis, which apparently run at RMB 3.2 per km (USD 0.76 per mile).

Wang also believes that as electric vehicles equipped with artificial intelligence are being shared by the public, the next page for automobile industry will be completely unprecedented.

Baidu’s Autonomous Driving Unit, led by Wang, will continue to focus on the research and development of fully autonomous vehicles. At the same time, the Baidu L3 Division established this September at the Baidu World Conference 2016 will help automobile makers in automating and upgrading their products.

The Baidu driverless car claims to have a recognition rate of 90.13% in identifying items, 95% in recognizing pedestrians, and 99.9% in reading traffic lights.

If you’re visiting Wuzhen this mid November, would you like to take a ride in it?

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