Wed, Oct 02, 2019 - Page 14 News List

Taiwan’s first domestically produced electric self-driving minibus
台灣自製自駕電動小巴Winbus搭乘初體驗

The self-driving, electrically powered Winbus drives amongst ordinary traffic on Lukang Road in Changhua County’s Lukang Township on Sept. 24.
自駕電動小巴士Winbus,九月二十四日於彰化縣鹿港鎮的鹿港路在一般車流量之中運行。

Photo: Tang Shih-ming, Liberty Times
照片:自由時報記者湯世名

At a cost of NT$30 million (approx. US$966,000), Taiwan’s first domestically developed self-driving electric bus, Winbus, took to the road on Sept. 24 at a demonstration event at Changhua Coastal Industrial Park in the county’s Lukang Township. Deputy Minister of Economic Affairs Wang Mei-hua, Changhua County Commissioner Wang Hui-mei and several other guests were given a preview ride in the Winbus, traveling at 30km per hour along roads in Lukang. During the demonstration, the vehicle simulated stopping for pedestrians and at traffic lights. At the event the deputy minister also signed a memorandum of understanding with Winbus’ developers to begin operating the self-driving vehicle on public roads within Lukang by the end of the year. Everyone hoped this would provide a boost to local industry.

The intention is for Winbus to operate on public roads within the bustling streets of tourist hotspots. Prior to the Winbus officially coming into service, deputy minister and the county commissioner, together with Automotive Research & Testing Center president Liao Ching-chiu and several other guests, boarded the sleekly-designed “smart bus,” loaded with futuristic technology, for a 4.4km journey from the testing center to the Taiwan Glass Gallery. En route, the Winbus successfully navigated a T-junction without traffic lights, identified and gave way to pedestrians, changed from the slow to the fast lane, applied the brakes in a controlled manner for vehicles in front, crossed traffic light junctions and turned left at an intersection before arriving at its destination.

Speaking to reporters, Wang Hui-mei said Changhua County Government will fully cooperate with the central government and businesses to enable the project to be expanded throughout the county, perhaps extending the system nationwide and even entering into international markets. Liao said the exterior modeling of the Winbus was carried out by Taiwanese designers and claimed that its capabilities outstrip that of any similar-sized self-driving minibuses currently in operation around the world, adding that Winbus heralds the achievement of a new milestone in “smart transportation.”

(Translated by Edward Jones, Taipei Times)

耗資三千萬元全台第一輛由國內自行研發製造的自駕電動小巴士Winbus,九月二十四日在彰化縣鹿港鎮彰濱工業區舉辦體驗會,由經濟部次長王美花、彰化縣長王惠美等人先行搭乘體驗,在鹿港街道以時速三十公里行駛,模擬遇到行人時煞車、紅燈時停車等路況都相當順利,並共同簽署合作備忘錄,全力推動自駕車於今年底前在鹿港區實路運行,帶動地方產業發展。

Winbus未來將會在熙來攘往的觀光地區實際道路上運行,因此在正式營運前,當日先行開放讓外界體驗這輛外型美感及先進科技系統兼具的智慧交通新工具,由王美花、王惠美與車輛研究測試中心總經理廖慶秋等人搭乘,從車測中心出發到四點四公里遠的台灣玻璃館,途經無號誌T字路口與遇到行人時主動辨識並採取適應性煞車動作,以及快車道切入慢車道右轉、直行遇前車緩煞停、紅綠燈號誌、十字路口左轉、到站停車等實際路況,Winbus也都能夠順利運作。

王惠美表示,後續縣府將全力配合中央及業者,讓這項計畫拓展到彰化縣甚至是全國,並將這項產業跨足到國際市場。廖慶秋說,Winbus造型由國內自行設計,性能已超越國外運行的自駕小巴,宣告台灣的智慧交通進入新的里程碑。

(自由時報記者湯世名)

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