BMW Makes Auto Racing Obsolete

By Evan Ackerman

According to Jeremy Clarkson, this is “the most important car ever, in the whole of automotive history… probably.” The BMW 330i in the following video is able to learn from a human driver how to navigate a track (i.e. how to take the corners and what lines to follow), and then it can repeat the course at race speeds without any human assistance whatsoever:

This technology, which could be adapted to other types of cars, is based primarily on a military-grade GPS system that is able to locate the car within a few centimeters. Since the car knows exactly where it is, it can compare its present location with the instruction it received on the track, and then perform the same maneuvers as the human driver did. There isn’t much in the way of creativity involved here, and the BMW doesn’t seem to be outfitted with any other sensors that might allow it to react to other cars or unforeseen obstacles, but all of that stuff is in existence already. So, all you’d have to do is stick some additional hardware onto a race car, take your time to drive the perfect lap the day before, and then click the “repeat x200” button on race day and go have a beer or six while the car wins the race for you.

Yeah, okay, so I’m way oversimplifying and know nothing about auto racing. But if Jeremy Clarkson is considering firing The Stig after this, what hope can the rest of us possibly have?

VIA [ Crave ]