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France World Record: World's first driverless bus service

France World Record: World’s first driverless bus service

Lyon, France – October 5, 2016 – Two electric minibuses with a capacity of 15 passengers each are now operating a 10-minute route with five stops in the French city of Lyon at an average speed of 6 miles (10km) per hour, thus setting the world record for being the World’s first driverless bus service.

The two electric vehicles, fitted with high-tech equipment including laser sensors, stereo vision and GPS, can ferry around 15 passengers at a top speed of 20 kilometres an hour (12 mph). Manufactured by the French firm Navya and costing €200,000 ($225,000) apiece, a prototype was tested in 2013.

Photo: The two electric vehicles, fitted with high-tech equipment including laser sensors, stereo vision and GPS, can ferry around 15 passengers at a top speed of 20 kilometres an hour (12 mph). Manufactured by the French firm Navya and costing €200,000 ($225,000) apiece, a prototype was tested in 2013.

The Guinness World Records world record for the largest bus mosaic consisted of 156 buses and was achieved by Department of Transport (UAE), in Abu Dhabi, UAE, on 18 November 2014.

Guinness World Records also recognized the world record for the greatest distance by electric bus, single charge (non solar); it is 1,018 km (632.55 miles) and was achieved by Brighsun EV Group (Australia) in Melbourne, Australia from 14 to 15 November 2015.

The vehicles have been tested without passengers in other French cities and in Switzerland, and a trial is under way in Dubai, using a bus developed with the help of a French company.

In Lyon, the 4-metre-long buses attracted curious onlookers who took ‘selfies’ beside the vehicles, which allow passengers to stand at the front and enjoy the journey from a “driver’s eye view”.

The buses are not capable of manoeuvring around other traffic and the routes are near a tramway where other vehicles are not allowed.

Each minibus, costing about £170,000, is equipped with lasers, cameras and electronic systems that detect and analyse any movement around it. Navya has taken about 30 orders for the vehicles and plans to develop larger buses able to carry 20 passengers.

Two Metro lines in Paris operate without drivers, with the services controlled automatically, as does London’s Docklands Light Railway.

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