Report: self-driving car ‘unable to navigate Birmingham’s spaghetti junction’
Onboard tech ‘entirely flummoxed by inexplicable network of roads’, say engineers
Here’s TopGear.com’s roving correspondent, Cory Spondent, with his mostly incorrect exclusives from the world of motoring
A self-driving car using artificial intelligence has been entirely unable to negotiate the infamous ‘Spaghetti Junction’, motoring engineers have confirmed.
The impossibly complicated network of roads running along the outskirts of Birmingham – officially called the Gravelly Hill Interchange – has completely confounded a suite of cars outfitted with cutting-edge autonomous driving technology.
Engineers now believe 'the most complex interchange on the British road system' - as noted by the Guinness Book of World Records - has set the development of self-driving cars back at least a decade.
“We’ve been tirelessly developing technology to allow cars to drive themselves in humanity’s great quest for improvement. They can read road signs, watch out for pedestrians, change lanes and even park themselves.
“But even our next-generation self-driving tech outfitted with AI could not figure out how to successfully navigate that mindbogglingly indecipherable junction and its impossible layout if its very existence depended on it.
“We packed those cars with processing power that’d rival an interstellar space mission, and yet each processor just burned out trying to work out five levels and 73 miles of sheer junctional hell.
“Perhaps many years from now, when we’re all living on Mars, greater minds than ours can build AI into cars able to work out that godawful junction, but it won’t happen in our lifetimes. I’m quitting tomorrow and taking up gardening. Less stressful.”
A London-based engineer working on self-driving technology later added: “Spaghetti Junction? Try getting them to work out Hangar Lane at rush hour.”
Thank you for subscribing to our newsletter. Look out for your regular round-up of news, reviews and offers in your inbox.
Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.