Baidu is often referred to as China’s Google, not only because it happens to be the most widely used search engine in the People’s Republic, but because it’s doing some of the things that Google is also doing, like working on self-driving cars. It was only a few days ago when we got our first look at Baidu’s self-driving car, and now the company has revealed that it actually aims to bring self-driving buses to roads in about three years.
Baidu has already set up a separate business unit to oversee all of its interests in the automotive sector. The company says that it’s going to bring self-driving buses to roads in three years and then start mass producing them within five years.
The company has not yet revealed which auto manufacturer it’s going to link up for the bus project, or how much money it’s going to pour into this effort. It did reveal though that the new business unit it has created will include its partnership with BMW to develop an autonomous passenger car, that’s also expected to enter mass production within five years.
Baidu isn’t the only Chinese heavyweight that’s looking to make a market in the self-driving car industry. Alibaba has also revealed that it’s going to launch its first autonomous car in partnership with China’s SAIC Motor Corp. These efforts follow that of the likes of Google which has already been working on this technology for a very long time, and has even designed its very own self-driving car.