Robots Still 10 Minutes Off The Pikes Peak Pace

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

With results from Audi’s driverless attempt at Pikes Peak certified, it seems that we have nothing to fear from the GPS-based autonomous drifting machine. Audi’s press release notes:

Overall, the Autonomous Audi TTS Pikes Peak completed the mountain course in 27 minutes, as verified by Pikes Peak International Hill Climb officials. No human rally driver has completed the course in fewer than 10 minutes, despite driving cars that produced more than 900 hp. The Autonomous Audi TTS Pikes Peak generates 265 hp. Race officials told researchers they would expect an expert race driver on the course to finish in around 17 minutes in a car similar to the TTS.

Take that robots! You may build cars better than humans, but you’ve still got a thing or two to learn about driving.

[UPDATE: the Stanford team writes in to remind us that the point of the exercise was to safely develop driver-assistance systems, and that the 27 minute time was ” just a measurement of our safety plan and the speed we set for the lead vehicle.” Call us insecure, but we’re still calling this a victory for H.Sapiens.]

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  • AJ AJ on Nov 21, 2010

    Indeed good for our team! However I suspect that the robots will eventually do better, as they have no fear of rolling off a cliff, not to mention death.

  • Stryker1 Stryker1 on Nov 22, 2010

    Can't wait for the day when kids will wish to grow up to be race-car passengers.

  • Lynn Ellsworth Lynn Ellsworth on Nov 22, 2010
    robo drivers won't compete with human drivers except in novelty competitions. Track days will as fun as ever. Watching quiet electric cars go around a track at 400 kmph while being guided by sensors in the vehicles and the track will be scientifically interesting but probably not much fun to watch. However the fans will be sitting in the cars having parties and won't have to bake in the sun.

  • Peter Aiello Peter Aiello on Nov 22, 2010

    I thought I read an article, or heard somewhere that they were going to pave the pikes peak course because all of the gravel was changing the mountains native soil (or something to that effect)