World’s fastest driverless car hits 175mph as AI breaks speed record

A self-driving car is officially the fastest in the world after smashing a Guinness World Record test.

Roborace Robocar – driven by AI and powered by electricity – reached an eye-watering top speed of 175.49mph during back-to-back runs at Elvington Airfield.

There was no original record to beat — being the first of its kind — so Guinness set a target of 160mph, Motoring Research reports.

Robocar also wowed at Goodwood Festival of Speed last year, when it became the first self-driving car to complete the event's hill climb.

Bryn Balcombe, Roborace's chief strategy officer, says the technology is set to “blow people's minds” when they watch races live.

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He told Business Insider: “I think it's really interesting: Roborace itself is actually a media and entertainment business.

“That's what our focus is.

“We've chosen an incredibly hard genre of media and entertainment to get into and had to design our own vehicles, but it's really that that's where we're gonna see the biggest changes coming.

“Yes, these vehicles are amazing, but what we can do with that for media and entertainment experiences will blow people's minds.”

Balcombe said the gap between AI and human ability is ever-narrowing.

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“In previous years where we've done human versus machine competitions, some that we're looking at this year experiment with having human in for part of the race and AI for the second part, some are pure AI races only,” he said.

“So when we've done human versus machine competitions, it's been really interesting, No. 1, to see the human's reaction, that they want to beat the robot.

“There's that competitive element there. And then, No. 2, from the AI teams, who really want to get as close to and then eventually beat the human drivers.

“So they're probably about 5-10% away at the moment, before we get to the human level of performance.”

The record features in the 2020 Guinness World Records book, which went on sale on September 5.

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