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Driverless car test fleet to hit UK roads in 2019

Driverless car test fleet to hit UK roads in 2019

A fleet of driverless vehicles using UK-built technology is to be trialled between Oxford and London in a 30-month pilot set to take place in 2019.  

Oxford-based artificial intelligence company, Oxbotica, is leading the Driven consortium of companies, which has received an £8.6 million grant from the government-backed Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles delivered through Innovate UK.  

The consortium will put manned cars onto roads of Oxford and London and run them between the two cities as a public demonstration of the viability of this technology.
 

Supporters say the Driven consortium will show how autonomous vehicles will change the world, both for the public and industrial users. The pilot scheme is also designed to answer questions around cyber security and insurance as well as the underlying technology.
 

The Driven consortium is led by Oxbotica and the other partners in the project are the Oxford Robotics Institute, insurer XL Catlin, Nominet, Telefonica, the Transport Research Laboratory (TRL), UKAEAs RACE facility, Oxfordshire County Council, Transport for London and Westbourne Communications.  

Dr Graeme Smith, chief executive of Oxbotica, said: “No company, group or consortium of autonomy experts has ever attempted what Driven is planning. We are seeking to address some of the most fundamental challenges preventing the future commercial deployment of fully autonomous vehicles.”  

Rob Wallis, chief executive at TRL, said: “We continue to see a major industry shift towards automation, connectivity and electrification of vehicles, and the use of shared mobility schemes.  

“Such market disruption is transforming the way people will travel, especially in cities, and it is vital that the UK remains at the forefront of this development.”