Chinese autonomous driving trial breaks new ground

Chinese autonomous driving company XPeng, has completed a ‘record-breaking’ road trip along China’s east coast with its autonomous cars as part of trials to show how autonomous systems perform in real environments.

XPeng used a fleet of its electric P7 models to cover the 3,670-kilometer route from Guangzhou to Beijing in one week. The cars visited 10 cities in six provinces, said the company.

The route includes a range of complex and busy highways and for 2,900 km the company’s NGP (navigation guided pilot) was in charge. The driver on board each car rarely had to intervene, achieving an average of 0.71 human driver interventions per 100 km, said XPeng in a report by thestar.com.

This sets a new benchmark for long-distance autonomous driving by mass production passenger vehicles, according to the company. XPeng’s NGP system uses 14 cameras, five radars, 12 sensors and sophisticated, high-definition mapping.

Xpeng said the average success rate of the cars for lane changing and overtaking was 94.4%, with similar figures for highway ramp entering and passing through tunnels.

“The expedition has fully challenged the robustness and reliability of the NGP function,” said Xpeng chairman He Xiaopeng.

In regular electric mode the P7 electric can cover up to 700 kilometres on a single charge.

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