Stanford Engineers Get Driverless DeLorean to Drift Like a Human Driver

Their aim is to develop automated vehicles that can handle emergency maneuvers.
Loukia Papadopoulos

Self-driving cars have come a long way since their early beginnings, continuously growing in safety, practicality, and agility. Striving for perfection, it seems that Stanford engineers may have trained the ultimate self-driving car.

Called Marty, their self-driving DeLorean can drift like a human driver. In this video, we watch as the engineers make the car complete a course called the MARTYkhana.

The whole point of the training is to develop better self-driving cars. “We’re trying to develop automated vehicles that can handle emergency maneuvers or slippery surfaces like ice or snow,” said mechanical engineer and project leader Chris Gerdes.

“We’d like to develop automated vehicles that can use all of the friction between the tire and the road to get the car out of harm’s way. We want the car to be able to avoid any accident that’s avoidable within the laws of physics.”

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We have to admit watching the DeLorean complete its MARTYkhana is nothing short of remarkable. The course has many turns that would be difficult to maneuver even for a human driver.

Overall, the car performs quite nicely, and it's a testament to the engineering of this Stanford team. Color us impressed.

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