The Robocar – effectively the world’s first self driving electric racing car – has been officially introduced at an appropriate venue – the stage of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.
Roborace CEO Denis Sverdlov, alongside Daniel Simon, Roborace Chief Design Officer, took the wraps off the futuristic sounding and looking racer while addressing the evolution of autonomous vehicles during a keynote speech. “This is a huge moment for Roborace as we share the Robocar with the world and take another big step in advancing driverless electric technology,” said Sverdlov. “It was very important for us that we created an emotional connection to driverless cars and bring humans and robots closer together to define our future. Building the Robocar in less than a year has been extraordinary and we cannot wait to continue the journey of learning with the Robocar.”
The new Roborace series is intended as the most important platform – Formula One for autonomous vehicles – for the world’s best minds to advance the software of driverless cars that may soon take to the streets. The car was penned by automotive futurist Simon, who also worked for Hollywood blockbusters such as Tron Legacy and Oblivion, and comes in at a curb weight of 2,149 pounds (975 kilograms) – measuring 188.9 inches (4.8 meters) long and 78.7 inches (2 meters) wide.
It comes with four motors each good for 300 kW, a 540 kW battery – and has a predominant carbon fiber build – and theoretical maximum speed of more than 198 miles per hour (320 kilometers per hour). With no human to guide it, the car drives itself using 5 LIDARs, two radars, 18 ultrasonic sensors, two optical speed sensors, six AI cameras, and GNSS positioning. Its brain is the Nvidia Drive PX2, capable of up to 24 trillion AI operations per second, and will be programmed by each team’s engineers according to their specific software. Michelin is the series’ official tyre partner, and Nvidia is obviously the chip partner.