Baidu to bring autonomous vehicles to Anhui-based China Speech Valley
Chinese Internet titan Baidu Inc will cooperate with China Speech Valley, an industrial park in East China's Anhui Province focusing on artificial intelligence (AI) development, to gradually implement such programs as Baidu autonomous vehicle and Baidu Cloud there, according to local media.
“Baidu has established Baidu Cloud Service center in Shushan district of Hefei. Going forward, the center will team up with China Speech Valley in incubating AI innovation programs,” said Zhang Gao, general manager of Baidu's Education Business Unit.
“Autonomous driving is also a key sector in which Baidu and China Speech Valley will deeply cooperate,” added Zhang.
Robin Li, chairman and CEO of Baidu, had announced at the Baidu World 2017 that Baidu and JAC Motors, a state-owned automaker headquartered in Hefei, will jointly launch autonomous vehicles in 2019. Zhang Gao disclosed that Baidu's Autonomous Driving Unit has already signed a strategic agreement with JAC Motors. Both parties are on course developing self-driving vehicles equipped with Baidu's AI technologies. 
At Baidu Create 2018 on July 4, Robin Li announced that the world's first mass-produced L4 autonomous mini bus “Apolong” developed by Baidu Apollo in collaboration with King Long has already rolled off the production line at its manufacturing facility in Xiamen. 
Reportedly, the Apolong is China's first self-driving microcirculation bus, which made its first debut at Baidu World Conference in November last year. Without steering wheel, driver's seats, accelerator and pedal, the vehicle measures 4.3 meters in length and 2 meters in width with a capacity of 14 people. The Apolong bus is driven by electric power system that allows a 100km-trip with 2-hour charging.
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