Subaru Builds New Tracks In Japan For Autonomous Testing

Subaru has built a pair of new test tracks in Japan, both aimed at helping the automaker develop its driver-assist systems.

A new high-speed track encompasses 2.6 miles of roadway, with four lanes, gentle curves, entrances and exits, and concrete pavement to approximate the conditions of an American freeway.

It’s joined by a new urban road course designed to simulate city driving, with one lane in each direction, intersections (with and without advanced turning lanes) crosswalks, and a European-style roundabout (traffic circle).

The new tracks form part of the company’s Bifuka Proving Ground near Hokkaido. The 900-acre facility opened in 1995, initially for cold-weather testing, and added a high-speed track in 2003. The latest additions will begin service next month, along with upgrades to the existing circuits and a new office building.

The additions are intended to help Subaru further develop its EyeSight driver-assist system. The company is working on an intersection collision avoidance system, and intends to roll out an automated lane-changing function by 2020.

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  • Mark

    The track looks pretty useless for autonomous testing, but looks like it could be a lot of fun to drive on. It’s got a drag strip, a few long banking corners for drifting, a doughnut area, some exciting high speed corners. It looks to me like somebody has used the autonomous car development budget to build themselves a playground.

  • WELL PAVED AND CLEARLY MARKED. IF ONLY REAL CITY STREETS WERE LIKE THAT.

  • Bash

    And a perfect spot for drifting that WRX

  • Infinite1

    Looks like a fun track

  • fabri99

    Testing grounds like this one should be used for driving license practice. I don’t know about other countries, but in Italy you just practise on public roads…

    • YUP, IN AMERICA TOO.

      • fabri99

        Well, I’m quite positive that in scandinavian countries they have specific courses, but it may have to do with the tougher conditions there (driving on ice etc.).