Taiwan unveils indigenously developed self-driving electric minibus

An indigenously developed self-driving electric minibus was unveiled Aug. 26 in Taipei City, underscoring the commitment of the government to advancing the country's autonomous electric vehicle industry.

Created by state-backed Automotive Research and Testing Center headquartered in central Taiwan's Taichung City, WinBus is the result of collaboration among more than 20 local suppliers of components, parts and related services, according to the Minister of Economic Affairs.

WinBus meets level 4 automated driving system criteria as defined by SAE International, a U.S.-based association and standards organization for engineering professionals, the MOEA said, adding that it is testament to Taiwan's high-tech prowess.

Level 4 is the second-highest ADS standard on a scale of 0 to 5. It indicates a vehicle is fully autonomous and capable of performing safety-critical driving functions and monitoring road conditions for a designated journey.

MOEA Minister Shen Jong-chin said at the WinBus unveiling ceremony that the government is leaving no stone unturned in promoting the development and implementation of autonomous transportation in Taiwan. Measures include establishing requisite legal framework, as well as fostering proprietary core technology, he added.

A prime example in this regard is the Unmanned Vehicles Technology Innovative Experimentation Act promulgated in late 2018. Drafted by the MOEA, the legislation aims to create a stable environment conducive to R and D and commercial application of related technology.

WinBus is a milestone in this regard, Shen said, adding that it will attract more top-flight talents to the potential-laden sector, fast-track the upgrade of Taiwan's automotive industry and position the country as a global provider of automated driving system solutions.

WinBus is scheduled to debut in the fourth quarter as a tourism factory transport link in Taichung, with additional trials planned before full operation is greenlighted.

Source: Taiwan Today