This is the series robotic racing mule that eschews the need for a driver, and the development vehicle for the new autonomous racing series is expected to make its first public appearance during the Donington Park Formula E tests.
The future is here – the all-electric Formula E racers will soon be accompanied by a sister series that involves autonomous vehicles that completely lack a driver. So, Roborace’s ‘DevBot’ is a driverless, electric car that will make sure teams can develop their software and also get a feel fo the hardware they will be using in the actual Robocar. There were secret test runs on airfields and at Silverstone, where the car engaged the autonomous mode, and the first public outing will be at Donington on August 24th. The DevBot is unlike the “Robocar” because it still has a cockpit and the car can exchange driving duties between a human or the computer – allowing the teams to get a real-life feel of how the car performs on the track.
Meanwhile, the DevBot has the same powertrain, sensors, computation systems and communication technology as the Robocar, which is being designed by Daniel Simon and is slated for its own introduction sometimes later this year. The DevBot is entirely bespoke, aside from the standardized safety-compliant racing cockpit for the human pilot. The team was also able to present the development mule in just nine months with fully operational autonomous system and electric racing powertrain. Numerous technology, motorsport, automotive, research laboratories and university teams have applied to form the backbone of the Roborace competition, which is slated to join the 2016/17 Formula E season.