Volkswagen Group of America (VWGoA) on July 6 implemented an autonomous driving vehicle test program in Austin, TX.
“We are thrilled to bring our exciting ID. Buzz vehicles to American roads," said Pablo Di Si, president and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America.
The program will conduct tests using VW ID.Buzz units outfitted with autonomous driving technology from Volkswagen’s partnership with Mobileye, formed in 2016 to develop autonomous driving technology. At the time, the partnership focused on developing camera-based real-time image processing.
The German automaker will start the test program with 10 VW ID.Buzz vans. Each all-electric vehicle will collect data across diverse driving scenarios.
Every unit in the fleet is equipped with the autonomous technology platform developed through Volkswagen and Mobileye’s partnership. The platform includes cameras, radar and lidar technology. All vehicles will be supervised by human drivers during the initial test phase.
VWGoA aims to grow the test fleet in Austin and expand its testing operations to at least four more cities in the U.S.
“Expanding Volkswagen Group’s global autonomous driving vehicle program to the United States marks an important milestone for us. In the future, we will tap into the rising demand for new mobility services with our iconic ID.Buzz. We will also offer a truly captivating product to support transportation services American consumers can rely upon and trust,” said Di Si.
VWGoA established a Volkswagen ADMT, LLC, subsidiary to support the autonomous vehicle test program. The subsidiary has teams in Belmont, CA, and Austin. Volkswagen ADMT plans to hire employees who work with Argo AI.