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Chinese Making Big Strides with Self-Driving Cars

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Feb. 12, 2018—Chinese companies including Baidu, Didi and JD appear poised to make significant strides with regard to autonomous driving, rolling out tests across the country after Beijing recently allowed such applications.

On Feb. 2, Beijing released a document regarding road testing driverless cars, which details what tests a smart car must undergo before being allowed to run on city roads, news website ecns.cn reported.

No company has officially submitted an application, but opening up applications for self-driving vehicle tests is a new step for the Chinese government in its bid to harness the use of artificial intelligence for transportation, as part of efforts to make China a global leader in smart-car technology by 2035, experts noted.

The technical assessment dictated that vehicles should be tested during daylight hours, and at relatively low speeds. Additionally, it was determined that vehicles should be able to switch between self-driving and conventional modes. The tests figure to be closely monitored.

The U.S. boasts no less than 40 companies that have been granted licenses for driverless cars, and at least 10 of them are Chinese companies, or have a Chinese background.

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