Latest autonomous Audi RS7 is lighter and faster

Robby the real racing robot car
13 Jul, 2015 5:14pm Jonathan Burn

Audi showcases 'Robby', the self-driving RS7 - it's faster on track and 400kg lighter than before

Audi is forging ahead with autonomous driving technology having unveiled a faster and lighter version of the RS7 Piloted Driving Concept.

Called ‘Robby’, this latest version carries over all of the sensors, cameras and GPS radars from the previous Audi RS7 Piloted Concept but crucially weighs 400kg less than before. That weight loss will be of benefit to Audi's all-new A8 saloon due next year – the German brand's first production model set to feature autonomous driving tech, with less weight meaning reduced running costs and performance gains.

Audi put the self-driving RS7 to the test at the Sonoma Raceway in California, where it lapped the 2.5-mile circuit in 2:01.01. Audi also claimed the RS7 ‘turned in lap times that were better than those of sports car drivers' - though a fast lap in a WTCC racer with a pro driver behind the wheel is around 15 seconds quicker.

Power remains unchanged in the updated version, with the 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 developing 552bhp but having shed 400kg acceleration has improved although Audi has not yet released any performance figures.

Now see an Audi A7 drive itself (and us) on public roads.