Vehicles with no drivers are no longer just a thing in futuristic films. As the world’s first, a driverless bus in France started carrying passengers for a daily bus service.
In Lyon, France, the free buses have started transporting passengers in its 4-meter long vehicle with a capacity for 15 passengers. The service includes two electric shuttles in the city’s Confluence area that transports passengers in a 10-minute route that hosts five stops. It runs at an average speed of six miles per hour.
Driverless Bus France
The electric buses, designed by French company Navya, have features that include the LiDAR technology and motion sensors to help the vehicle avoid accidents. Navya’s chief executive Christophe Sapet told Telegraph.co.uk that the buses are “equipped with a range of detectors” to help the shuttles “know exactly where they are” and be able to “detect everything happening around them,” like intelligently avoiding collisions.
For safety, the buses only maneuver away from other cars in routes that are in a tramway. Jean-Pierre Farandou of the Keolis transport group says “neither the current technology nor the legislation” around vehicles like the driverless bus is allowed to “operate in the midst of cars or other traffic.”
More In Store
Navya has already taken around 30 orders for the electric shuttle and they are also working on creating bigger buses that can accommodate up to 20 passengers.
Previously, the electric buses have been tested sans passengers in Switzerland and various cities in France. Meanwhile, a company aided by Navya is also in the works to conducting a trial in Dubai.
Today’s technology continues to awe many people, and the driverless bus in France surely catches the eyes of onlookers who are posing for selfies with the vehicle. But the innovations will not stop there as Sapet promises a “driverless French car” will soon operate in the cities of France around 2018, and Google and Uber should watch out.
Photo source: Flickr