Coun­try is­sues na­tional stan­dards for au­ton­o­mous ve­hi­cle test­ing

China Daily - - MOTORING - By LI FUSHENG

China has rolled out a set of na­tional stan­dards for test­ing smart au­ton­o­mous cars on roads, which is ex­pected to fa­cil­i­tate com­pa­nies’ test­ing in dif­fer­ent re­gions and thus speed up the tech­nol­ogy’s de­vel­op­ment in the coun­try.

Around a dozen re­gional gov­ern­ments have is­sued their guide­lines on road tests of au­ton­o­mous ve­hi­cles, with the first re­leased in Bei­jing in De­cem­ber 2017, but there had not been one at the na­tional level be­fore the set of stan­dards were re­leased last week.

Lo­cal stan­dards vary from re­gion to re­gion, pos­ing bar­ri­ers for com­pa­nies that would like to con­duct tests in dif­fer­ent places, so a set of na­tional stan­dards was re­quired to solve the prob­lem, said the China In­dus­try In­no­va­tion Al­liance for the In­tel­li­gent and Con­nected Ve­hi­cles.

The al­liance, to­gether with sev­eral other in­dus­try as­so­ci­a­tions, was com­mis­sioned by the Min­istry of In­dus­try and In­for­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy to com­pile the stan­dards.

With safety as its over­rid­ing rule, the set of stan­dards cov­ers tests of ve­hi­cles in 34 traf­fic sit­u­a­tions, such as slow­ing down af­ter de­tect­ing speed limit signs and stop­ping when spot­ting pedes­tri­ans ahead.

Tests un­der spe­cial weather or road con­di­tions are not in­cluded, but dif­fer­ent sit­u­a­tions have been cho­sen for pas­sen­ger ve­hi­cles and com­mer­cial ones.

An­a­lysts said the move is ex­pected to fa­cil­i­tate the de­vel­op­ment of au­ton­o­mous driv­ing in the coun­try, which is al­ready the world’s largest car mar­ket and is de­ter­mined to be­come a global au­to­mo­tive power in terms of smart cars.

China ex­pects smart cars with some au­ton­o­mous func­tions to ac­count for 50 per­cent of new ve­hi­cles sold in the coun­try by 2020, ac­cord­ing to a blue­print re­leased by the Na­tional De­vel­op­ment and Re­form Com­mis­sion in Jan­uary.

It is part of the coun­try’s ef­forts to be­come a global power in smart car de­vel­op­ment and pro­duc­tion by 2035.

A num­ber of Chi­nese and for­eign com­pa­nies see China as one of the most at­trac­tive mar­kets for self-driv­ing tech­nolo­gies and have be­gun cam­paigns.

Baidu Inc’s self-driv­ing pro­gram, Apollo, has at­tracted a large num­ber of Chi­nese and in­ter­na­tional part­ners, in­clud­ing Ford Motor Co and Daim­ler AG, par­ent com­pany of Mercedes-Benz.

With ad­di­tional tech­ni­cal ap­pli­ca­tions from Baidu’s Apollo, Daim­ler be­came the first in­ter­na­tional au­tomaker in July to re­ceive a road test li­cense for highly au­to­mated ve­hi­cles in Bei­jing.

Hu­ber­tus Troska, the board mem­ber of Daim­ler AG re­spon­si­ble for its China op­er­a­tions, said re­al­iz­ing lo­cal au­to­mated driv­ing and con­nec­tiv­ity ser­vices re­quires un­der­stand­ing of the many char­ac­ter­is­tics that make the Chi­nese mar­ket unique.

Chi­nese com­pa­nies are also team­ing up to de­velop smart cars. A to­tal of 12 Chi­nese car­mak­ers and tech com­pa­nies have built a 600 mil­lion yuan joint ven­ture that spe­cial­izes in re­search and de­vel­op­ment of such cars.

Among the in­vestors are FAW Group Corp, Dongfeng Motor Corp, Guangzhou Au­to­mo­bile Group Co and China Au­to­mo­tive Tech­nol­ogy & Re­search Cen­ter Co.

Chi­nese cus­tomers are among the world’s most op­ti­mistic when it comes to the prospect of au­ton­o­mous driv­ing, Ford said in its 2018 Trends Re­port.

A to­tal of 83 per­cent of Chi­nese peo­ple said they are hope­ful about the fu­ture of au­ton­o­mous ve­hi­cles, ac­cord­ing to the re­port, which was based on a sur­vey of 9,042 peo­ple from nine coun­tries and re­gions.

PRO­VIDED TO CHINA DAILY

China’s self-driv­ing startup JingChi Corp con­ducts a road test of its self-driv­ing car in Guangzhou, Guang­dong prov­ince.

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