• Students compete for best piloted driving ‚model car‘
  • Audi’s Board of Management Member for Human Resources Prof. Thomas Sigi: “We are searching worldwide for the best experts for digitalisation and connectivity”
  • Prize money of 10,000 euros for the winning team

Ingolstadt, March 26, 2015 – A model car that reacts independently to an obstacle that suddenly appears and brakes accordingly: approximately 50 students from all over Germany are currently working on this scenario in the Audi Autonomous Driving Cup. They will present the capabilities of the model cars they have programmed themselves in the final of the competition in the Audi museum mobile at the end of March.

The Audi Autonomous Driving Cup is primarily aimed at students of informatics, computers science, electrical/electronic engineering and mechanical engineering. Ten teams from universities all over Germany have qualified for the competition, which Audi is holding for the first time this year.

“Rapidly advancing digitalisation and connectivity in the automotive industry are bringing a lot of exciting challenges,” said Audi’s Board of Management Member for Human Resources Prof. Thomas Sigi.

“That’s why we are searching worldwide for the best experts. The Audi Autonomous Driving Cup is a good opportunity for us to personally get to know young people with promising talent who would like to shape the innovations of tomorrow with us.”AU150215

The students received the model cars from Audi last autumn. The Audi Q5 models on a scale of 1:8 are powered by an electric motor and have a top speed of 40 km/h. They are all equipped with a sophisticated camera as well as various infrared and ultrasonic sensors, which Audi uses in a similar form also in series-produced vehicles. The participants were also provided with uniform basic software. Their task in the past six months has been to develop their own software architecture to evaluate the data from the camera and sensors, interpret the situation and control the car accordingly.

In the final of the competition in the Audi museum mobile in Ingolstadt, the students will now demonstrate the effectiveness of their software on an area of approximately 300 square metres. In direct competition with the other teams, their cars have to show how well they react to oncoming traffic and traffic at crossroads, difficult parking situations and obstacles that appear suddenly. The goal is to get through the course as fast as possible and without any mistakes. Accidents, lost time or inaccurately executed driving maneuvers lead to point deductions. The evaluations also take account of a scientific discourse in which the students describe to the jury how they programmed their vehicles, as well as a “freestyle” driving demonstration. On the last day of the competition, the participants have the opportunity to present their own creative solutions or driving manoeuvres. The team with the most points at the end wins prize money of 10,000 euros, with 5,000 euros for the second-placed team and 1,000 euros for the third.

Teams from 10 German universities have qualified for the first Audi Autonomous Driving Cup: Offenburg University, the Free University of Berlin, the University of Kassel, the University of Leipzig, the Technical University of Ingolstadt, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Leibniz University in Hanover, the Technical University of Munich, the Karlsruhe Informatics Research Center and the University of Freiburg.

The participants’ chances of future employment at the premium automobile manufacturer are good. This year alone, Audi intends to recruit more than 6,000 employees worldwide. About 4,000 of these new entrants will be employed at the German sites in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm, primarily in the fields of lightweight construction, connectivity and electric mobility.

In addition to internships and help with dissertations for students, Audi offers various entry programs for graduates and applicants with work experience. In the development program for academics, for example, participants develop valuable expertise in two areas during a four-year period and gain experience with interfaces to related specialist departments. In addition, Audi cooperates with 31 partner universities worldwide and supports highly qualified and talented young people: at present, more than 140 doctoral students are working on their theses in research projects financed by Audi.