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Mobility case studies & demos in Michigan

NAVYA autonomous bus

The University of Michigan’s Mcity Test Facility is home to a driverless electric shuttle bus manufactured by the French firm NAVYA. NAVYA is an affiliate member of Mcity, a public-private R&D partnership led by U-M to advance connected and automated vehicles. NAVYA introduced its Arma shuttle to North America at Mcity in late 2016. Now known as the Autonom, the shuttle can carry up to15 passengers and uses LiDAR sensors and GPS localization to navigate autonomously.

In addition to the shuttle located at the Mcity Test Facility, two NAVYA Autonom shuttles are in use as part of the Mcity Driverless Shuttle research project. The shuttles transport U-M students, faculty, and staff on a portion of U-M's North Campus. It is the first driverless shuttle project in the United States focused on consumer behavior research and data collection. The shuttles began carrying riders in June 2018. NAVYA opened its first North American assembly plant in Saline, Michigan with a goal of building approximately 25 autonomous electric shuttles.

To learn more about NAVYA at Mcity, visit

TARDEC autonomous drive

In October 2017, the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development, and Engineering Center (TARDEC) demonstrated its latest platooning technology during a test drive between Port Huron, Michigan to Sarnia, Ontario, crossing the Blue Water Bridge twice between the two countries.

The convoy of vehicles included two M915 tractors equipped with TARDEC’s Autonomous Mobility Appliqué Systems. This technology includes driver-warning features and semiautonomous driving that drives the vehicle along a pre-programmed path. TARDEC also tested their autonomous steering and leader-follower platooning technologies that enables the lead vehicle to “talk” and give instructions to the follower vehicles. This technology allows the vehicles to follow closely together, brake, accelerate, and steer according to the lead truck’s actions.

Magna and Continental cross-border drive

In August of 2017, Continental AG and Magna International Inc. each test drove automated vehicles over 300 miles with two international border crossings along the way. This called for partnerships across borders as well, and included PlanetM, the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), and the Ontario Ministry of Transportation (OMT).

The two cars drove almost completely automated during the drive, and Magna and Continental had the opportunity to test the CAV technology in conditions not offered in traditional testing facilities or roadways. They crossed under the Detroit Windsor Tunnel into Canada, where the cars did not have access to GPS signal, and took the Blue Water Bridge back into Michigan where the technology interacted with the infrastructure that consisted almost entirely of metal.

The cars ended their journey in Traverse City at the CAR Management Briefing Seminar, where a memorandum of understanding was signed between MDOT and OMT that would promote continued leadership and growth in the CAV industry in the Great Lakes Region.