Uber had said earlier in the year that it is teaming up with Carnegie Mellon University, in hopes to someday launch a fleet of self-driving taxis. And though it may be some time before these autonomous cabs formally hit the streets, a report from The Pittsburgh Business Times suggests that Uber may already be testing some vehicles designed for the project.
A Ford Fusion with the words “Uber Advanced Technologies Center” was spotted by the Pittsburgh Business Times in the city’s Strip District on May 13. Not only did the car’s side show those words, but there was also a device spotted on top, that “signals this isn’t your average Ford.” The devices on top appear to include a rotating Lidar scanner, same device found on top of Google’s self-driving cars, and other sensors are also present on the car. These, according to Gizmodo, may be “radar or stereo cameras.”
In a rather puzzling series of statements provided to the Pittsburgh Business Times, an Uber spokeswoman said that the car is “part of the early research efforts regarding mapping, safety, and autonomous systems.” The company, however, denied that the publication’s sighting is indeed that of a self-driving vehicle prototype.