A consortium of investors that include major carmakers Ford, GM, Honda, Nissan, and Toyota is putting US$1 million each into a three year trial at the University of Michigan’s Mcity, a newly open facility specifically designed as a controlled environment to test driverless cars for mass commercial markets, reports Environmental Leader.
Mcity, which opened last week by UoM’s Mobility Transformation Center, is a 32-acre simulated city that includes a network of roads. complete with intersections, traffic signs and signals, streetlights, buildings (facades), sidewalks and man-made obstacles, making it an ideal test bed for self-driving vehicles.
In addition to testing how cars drive themselves, Mcity will also help test different use cases such as vehicle to vehicle networking, and vehicle to infrastructure applications.
Other notable names investing in the trial include Qualcomm Technologies, Verizon Communications and Xerox.
According to the report, the project has a goal of putting a network of automated vehicles, including completely autonomous models, on the road of Ann Arbor by 2021.