Though I was cheering for the Stanford/VW/Red Bull team with "Junior" the Passat wagon. I do have to give props to the local Pittsburgh based team from Carnegie Mellon University.
The General donated a new Chevy Tahoe to CMU, and was aptly named "Boss" as it was one of the biggest vehicles in the challenge.
In the end, CMU trumped Stanford, MIT, and Virginia Tech on the 55 mile mock urban course. According to autoblog.com the average speeds were set at 13-14 MPH. And that non of the top vehicles in the challenge were cited with moving violations. Thought that obviously says that it did happen to at least one team.
Congratulations to Carnegie Mellon, and to General Motors on winning the $2 million dollar grand prize.
GM and Carnegie Mellon Bring Home the "Boss" in Driverless Vehicle Challenge
Victorville, Calif. - The Carnegie Mellon University Tartan Racing Team, with it's GM Chevrolet Tahoe "Boss" entry, claimed first prize today in the DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) Urban Challenge. The Urban Challenge is a competition between vehicles that drive themselves in a mock urban environment.
"This competition has significantly advanced our understanding of what is needed to make driverless vehicles a reality," said Larry Burns, GM vice president of R&D and Strategic Planning. "Imagine being virtually chauffeured safely in your car while doing your e-mail, eating breakfast and watching the news. The technology in "Boss" is a stepping stone toward delivering this type of convenience."
GM is focused on reinventing the automobile in ways that enhance driving safety and reduce traffic congestion, energy consumption and emissions," Burns continued. "We look forward to integrating the technology we used in this race into our cars and trucks, and to ensuring future personal transportation is sustainable."
In addition to GM and Carnegie Mellon University, the Tartan Team is supported by the following sponsors: Caterpillar, Continental AG, Intel, Google, Applanix, TeleAtlas, Vector, Ibeo, Mobileye, CarSim, CleanPower Resources, M/A-COM, NetApp, Vector, CANtech and Hewlett Packard.
Source: Autoblog.com & General Motors.