Audi TTS "Shelley" Autonomous CarEnlarge Photo
Racing is a great way to demonstrate the latest technologies developed by companies. In1985 Audi convinced America that all-wheel-drive was practical when it won at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb using their a Sport Quattro S1. Now Audi is returning to one of the oldest motorsport events to demonstrate their Autonomous TTS.
The project is part of a partnership between Audi, The Oracle Corporation, and Standford University’s Dynamic Design Lab. The group chose the TTS for its exciting sportiness, as well as for the computer friendly drive-by-wire system and DSG gearbox. It uses two computers, one system controls conveys the car’s placement and how safely it’s going solely using GPS and the car’s traction control system, while the other uses this information to operate the car.
The Pikes Peak race was chosen as it will challenge the Autonomous TTS. The course is 12.42 miles of road consisting of pavement and gravel, 156 turns, 4,271 feet of elevation change, and seven percent grades. The car won’t be going as slow as it shows in the video either; they plan to actually race the car up to the peak just like the ones piloted by people. While there is no word as to what class it would be under, it will more than likely be in the Exhibition Car category which emphasizes new technologies.
The TTS is done up in the classic Audi factory livery, and pays homage to the Sport Quattro S1 that dominated the competition 25 years ago. Later, the project will head to El Mirage to set a land speed record for fastest automated car.