South Perth, AU is piloting AVs
The world’s only AV trial spearheaded by a motorists’ advocacy group, the Royal Automobile Club of Western Australia (RAC), the Intellibus driverless shuttle carried over 5,000 passengers in its first year of service. The shuttle traverses a 3.5 km route along the bay of the Swan River on the South Perth Esplanade between the Old Mill and Sir James Mitchell Park. RAC chose the site after an assessment and analysis of over 20 sites across the Perth Metropolitan area.
The trial began in February 2016 with three phases and was not open to the public until September 2016. The Royal Automobile Club of West Australia (RAC) is leading the test with the support of the City of South Perth, Western Australia State Government, and AV manufacturer Navya. The project is primarily seen as a tool to raise public awareness about the potential safety benefits of driverless vehicles.
In November 2017, the pilot was extended for another two years with nearly AUD 1m in federal government funding. Hopes are to extend the trial in South Perth and expand the route network. According to RAC, locations suggested during the trial by the public for future use of driverless buses include Rottnest Island (a nearby island nature preserve), Perth Airport, aged care facilities, and hospitals.
2017-12-04: RAC will test Navya’s new 6-passenger Autonom Cabs in South Perth beginning April 2018 Link