Self Driving Ford Mustang At Goodwood Hill Climb

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By Dave Ashton

The Goodwood Festival of Speed UK and its hillclimb event always has its fair share of classics, but this year a mustang will be entering with a self driving muscle car/pony car in the form of a 1965 Ford Mustang. They are planning to send the converted 1965 Ford Mustang, completely self driving up the course a proof of concept to show that the technology can handle the tight corners, hay bales, walls and 1.16 miles course. The car has benn modified specifically for the event, rather than to be used on the open road. The Mustang should be the first ever road car to handle the hill climb.

The GPS-guided, self driving technologies have been put together in collaboration with Siemens AG and Cranfield University and will rely totally on computing power to get the car up the course. The powertrain 289ci. (4.7-litre), Suspension and steering still remains stock. During the hill climb there will be someone in the drivers seat to take over at any time, just in case. The Mustang will also use a 3D image of the track made by Bentley Systems. The Mustang has been dressed up in a unique silver wrap to mark the silver jubilee of the festival of speed.

Lee Dryden, marketing communications head at Siemens: “It’s the first time we have done anything like this and yes of course it is fun to do it for the Festival of Speed, but it also makes you think what cars might be like in the future. Siemens is preparing for an increasingly autonomous future and this is part of that. Maybe there will be cars we can sleep in or watch a film in while they drive us to where we want to go. The Mustang raises those sorts of questions.”

The Mustang was basically chosen as Lee is a big fan of the Mustang, “I just love the way the ’65 coupe looks, and the way the V8 roars. If you are going to choose an iconic American car from the ‘60s, it’s the first thing that springs to mind.”

Clearly the question comes up, why would you want a self driving classic as they are built to be driven. On the Goodwood website the guys behind the Mustang state, ‘What we are saying is that you can still drive your car. You can still enjoy driving it, but then you can have it drive you when you need it to. Our future is becoming increasingly autonomous in lots of ways. This is our answer to what that future may look like.’

The Festival of Speed will be held July 12-15.

Goodwood Festival of Speed 2018 Live Stream

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