Baidu has become the world leading in level 4 autonomous driving vehicle technology with their Apollo open platform. With advancement in level 4 autonomous driving vehicle, it means no driver is require behind its wheels.
The project has been started since 2017 with 116 partners and more than 10,000 developers developed the autonomous system. The system is now at version three.
To test the system, they have built a mini bus called the Apolong. Instead of using existing chasis, the bus was built on a new platform. It is being manufactured by King Long in Xiamen, China and can carry up to 14 passengers.
Baidu said it is a big achievement for them. The system now ready for its prime time and they have begin to mass production the vehicle.
The vehicle is equip with lots of advanced technology including laser radar, milimeter wave radar and HDR and stereo camera modules. It is unknown how much each vehicle will cost.
The self driving mini bus will started to operate in selected cities in China before going to Japan under SB Drive. SB Drive is the autonomous vehicle wing of the SoftBank Group. SoftBank now owns stake in Grab and Uber which provide e-haling service.