Watch: Toyota builds a Supra that drifts itself in the name of safety
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Thanks to its powerful engine and rear-wheel drive configuration, the Toyota Supra has always been a favourite among drifters, and with over 250kW coming from the BMW-sourced mill, the latest iteration is no exception.
For the most part, drifting is seen as a nuisance due to the noise and mess it creates, but Toyota is doing it for good over in America, and a driver isn't even needed to destroy the rear tyres.
In partnership with Stanford University, Toyota's Research Institute has created driving technology that helps to prevent accidents in real-world time, without human input of any kind.
To further develop this software, it was installed in a Supra race car which was then let loose on a skid pan. And unsurprisingly, the computers make drifting look far too easy.
While drifting isn't what Toyota set out to do with this program, it makes it look a whole lost more exciting, and is a good way to demonstrate how intricate the driving systems can be.
“Since 2008, our lab has taken inspiration from human race car drivers in designing algorithms that enable automated vehicles to handle the most challenging emergencies,” said Professor Chris Gerdes of Stanford University. “Through this research, we have the opportunity to move these ideas much closer to saving lives on the road.”
Taking real-world reactions from Toyota Racing Development, Toyota and Stanford are planning on creating life-saving tech together, and will probably destroy a lot of tyres in the process.