Robotic cars successfully complete 132-mile DARPA Grand Challenge race

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Saturday, October 8, 2005

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Five robotic vehicles successfully completed the US$2 million 2005 DARPA Grand Challenge 212 km / 132 mile race on Saturday October 8th, 2005. The winner, Stanford University's entry, is a Volkswagen named Stanley, which completed the course in 6 hours 53 minutes, beating the 10 hour minimum requirement for the US$2 million prize. A winner was not declared until October 9, when all 23 vehicles had attempted the race.

The first race in 2004 failed to produce any winners. A modified Humvee by Carnegie Mellon University completed less than 13 km / 8 miles to become the best robotic vehicle in the 2004 race. The unclaimed US$1 million prize in 2004 was doubled to US$2 million for 2005, as no vehicles completed the 2004 race.

The US$2 million prize goes to Stanford University for their entry. The other four entrants to successfully complete the course were robotic versions of a Ford Escape Hybrid, a Humvee, a Hummer H1, and an Oshkosh truck. The remaining 18 entrants did not complete the race, and all but one vehicle in the 2005 race surpassed the distance of the 2004 robotic Humvee. A staggered start for the race was used, in order to spread the distance between the 23 robotic vehicles.