Audi will enter an autonomous TTS rally car in next year's Pikes Peak hill climb in Colorado.
The TTS is being developed by Volkswagen’s Electronics Research lab, Stamford University and Sun Microsystems with the aim of producing a car capable of driving autonomously at the speeds and style normally expected of a professional rally driver.
Audi will convert the TT-S to fly by wire controls and ensure the car remains safe and reliable without a driver on board. Stamford and Sun Microsystems are jointly developing new control systems that allow the car to perform as a normal rally car on a variety of different surfaces.
A system is also being developed that will shutdown the car automatically if it detects the running conditions are no longer safe or if the car is out of control.
Audi has named the car Shelley, which refers to the nickname of Michelle Mouton, the most successful female rally driver of all time and the first woman to win at Pikes Peak. She won the event behind the wheel of the Audi Sport Quattro in 1985.