Autonomous Audi RS 7 Sets Lap Record in Spain

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Automakers continue to develop autonomous driving technology on private courses, public streets, and the race track. An autonomous Audi RS 7 sedan has set another track record. The Audi RS 7 piloted driving concept set a record lap of 2:07.67 at the FAST Parcmotor 2.6-mile race track near Barcelona in Spain. “Under challenging conditions on various international race courses, we are acquiring important experience in tuning our piloted functions at performance limits,” says Thomas Müller, who is responsible for the development of braking, steering and driver assistance systems at Audi, in a release. “Of course, this benefits development of our production assistance systems such as collision avoidance assist in the new Audi A4. Each race track is different and presents new challenges for us. We use the knowledge we gain to enhance the robustness and performance of our test vehicle.” Last year, an autonomous Audi RS 7, aka “Bobby,” lapped the Hockenheimring at speeds of up to 149.1 mph. The current car, named “Robby,” is powered by the automaker’s 560-hp twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8 engine. Audi has managed to cut about 880 pounds out of the new car compared to the previous model. Earlier this year, the current Audi RS 7 piloted driving concept lapped California’s Sonoma Raceway quicker than cars driven by professional drivers. Additionally, “Jack,” an autonomous Audi A7, drove from Silicon Valley to Las Vegas (559 miles) to the Consumer Electronics Show without driver intervention. Later, the same car drove on the German autobahns at speeds up to 81 mph. Audi has also tested piloted driving concepts in traffic-congested Shanghai. The automaker says the next generation of its flagship A8 sedan will feature autonomous technology that can take over tasks such as stop-and-go traffic on freeways up to 37 mph or when parking. Source: Audi