Economy, Auto

Driverless Minibuses in France

Driverless Minibuses  in FranceDriverless Minibuses  in France

Driverless minibuses will begin taking passengers in the eastern French city of Lyon at the European weekend in a yearlong experiment that officials are calling a “world first”. The two electric vehicles, fitted with high-tech equipment such as laser sensors, stereo vision and GPS, can ferry around 15 passengers at a top speed of 20 kilometers an hour. The initial route in the heart of the city will last 10 minutes and include five stops, AFP reported. Manufactured by the French firm Navya and costing €200,000 apiece, a prototype was tested in 2013. The Navya Arma had been in circulation for several days before Lyon Mayor Gerard Collomb inaugurated it on Friday morning. The minibuses have already been tested in other French cities as well as in Sion, Switzerland, but without carrying passengers. Driverless electric minibuses made by other companies have also been tested in the western French city of La Rochelle as part of a European experiment.