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Baidu unveils new autonomous vehicle Apollo RT6

On July 21, 2022, Baidu annual technology conference was held online.

Baidu's latest AI technology achievements have been unveiled, the most important of which is the release of the latest steering wheel-free unmanned vehicle Apollo RT6.

The Apollo RT6 is packed with 38 sensors, including:

  • eight light-detection and ranging (Lidar) sensors

  • 6 (0.2in) wave radars

  • 12 ultrasonic sensors

  • 12 cameras

It says its new model, the Apollo RT6, has the the road skills of a driver with 20 years' experience.

Under Chinese regulation, the autonomous cars currently still require a safety driver's presence.But one day, Baidu says, the Apollo RT6's detachable steering wheel could be replaced by extra seats, vending machines, desks or games consoles.

Each Apollo RT6 would cost about $ 38000, significantly less than previous models, Baidu said.

"This massive cost reduction will enable us to deploy tens of thousands of [automated vehicles] across China," co-founder and chief executive Robin Li said.

Baidu says its robo-taxis, running on a trial basis in 10 cities in China, including Shenzhen, Shanghai and Beijing, have given more than one million rides since its service launched, in 2020.

Baidu wants the Apollo RT6 to join its existing fleet in the second half of 2023, for a small-scale trial, and plans eventually to have 100,000 of them on the roads.

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