Bosch has been given the green light to test its self-driving cars on rural roads in Victoria, Australia, as it looks to refine its autonomous vehicle technology.
The German multinational has received a AUD$2.3mn state government grant to test the technology on high-speed rural roads.
At present, drivers have become five times more likely to be killed in a crash on Victoria’s rural roads than its city routes, according to the The Guardian.
The trial will expose the vehicle to a range of different traffic, weather and infrastructure conditions and in doing so it aims to improve road safety.
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To conduct the test, Bosch has been granted the state’s first permit to allow automated vehicles for on-road testing, with other successful applicants expected to be announced shortly.
The test is expected to begin in high-speed rural areas of the state later this year.
Commenting of the trial, President of Bosch Australia, Gavin Smith said: “Bosch is a proud leader in vehicle safety systems and is eager to commence this trial with technologies that will show how we can improve road safety and reduce road trauma on rural roads."
Through it's latest project, Bosch will take the new Bosch TAC model to the roads.
Similar to a Tesla Model S, the vehicle has been designed by more than 50 engineers and features world-class technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), a multitude of sensors, as well as high definition GPS.
Two drivers will also be on board to ensure the safe operation of the vehicle.
"The trials will support Victoria's readiness for CAV technologies and the knowledge gained will provide a better understanding of the infrastructure required to get these vehicles on the road, maximising their safety benefits," Acting Victorian Premier,” Jacinta Allan said in a recent statement.
"Victoria is leading the nation in the future of on-road technology and this trial is an exciting step towards driverless vehicles hitting the road," Allan claimed.
"The tragic fact is that you're five times as likely to be killed on a rural road than in the city. That's why we're rolling out a record roads investment in rural Victoria -- and this is another way we can improve safety and save lives."
The deal builds on the AUD$1.2mn joint investment made by Bosch and the Victorian government in 2016 – in conjunction with the Transport Accident Commission and Vic Roads – to develop the first self-driving vehicle in Australia.