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December 15, 2015

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Baidu seeks driverless buses on roads in 3 years

CHINA’S top online search firm Baidu Inc said it aims to put self-driving buses on the road in three years and mass produce them within five years, after it set up a business unit to oversee all its efforts related to automobiles.

The unit will also include its initiative in partnership with BMW to develop a driverless passenger vehicle, which may also be put into mass production within five years, a spokesman said yesterday.

Self-driving cars have emerged as a new battlefront for tech majors globally.

Alibaba Group says it will launch its first car in a partnership with Shanghai-based SAIC Motor Corp, while US tech heavyweights Google and Apple are also developing driverless cars.

The Baidu spokesman declined to give details on potential auto manufacturer partners for the bus project or investment amounts for the unit.

Baidu Senior Vice President Wang Jing will lead the new unit as general manager.



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