The German car manufacturer has paired with Seoul Robotics to fit its Dingolfing plant with a variety of sensors that can guide cars through various stages of the production process (via Automotive World). After the key is turned for the first time, the new 7 series will drive itself 170 meters from the plant’s initial testing area to the “finish area.” Bit its adventure doesn’t end there. It will also have to move itself from the finish area to the dispatch area.
According to Automotive World, BMW project manager Sascha Andree explained that this technology is different from what you’ll see when self-driving cars eventually hit the street, saying, “Automated driving within the plant is fundamentally different from autonomous driving for customers. It uses a completely different system. So instead of relying on the vehicle’s sensors, it uses an infrastructure outside the car to enable environment recognition and plan the vehicle’s movements.”
When the sensors collect information, the software from Seoul Robotics tells the car where it is in the plant and what is happening around it. Another piece of software, developed by Embotech, then plans the car’s route and gets it to where it needs to be through a series of commands.