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China Just Held a Car Race Without Any Drivers

  • Robocars evade cows and obstacles as they battle out race
  • China’s annual driving challenge attracts dozens of hopefuls
Driverless cars compete during the 3rd World Intelligent Driving Challenge in Tianjin.
Driverless cars compete during the 3rd World Intelligent Driving Challenge in Tianjin.

Source: Dongli District Government, Tianjin

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China’s road to mastering driverless-car technology is bumpy and full of surprises -- literally. Just ask those attending the country’s top autonomous-vehicle race .

In hot and windy conditions this week in the eastern city of Tianjin, dozens of self-driving cars raced for glory. On a circuit covering an area of 10 soccer fields, they navigated through bumps, sudden turns and artificial fog. Even fake cows and sheep suddenly crossed their paths for good measure. Some teams wreaked less havoc than others.