Germany's BMW takes its driverless cars to Shanghai

German carmaker BMW is to be the first foreign manufacturer to trial its driverless cars in China, with two vehicles from its 7 series starting tests in Shanghai in May, the company announced from its Munich headquarters on Wednesday.

The number of vehicles is set to rise to seven by December, with the cars gathering everyday data on traffic in order to improve the software. BMW has 60 experts working in the coastal megalopolis.

The company is currently trialling 40 self-driving cars in various locations around the world, half of them in Munich.

Some 1,300 engineers and software experts are working in a new development centre near Munich. The company's aim is to have its driverless cars cover 240 million kilometres on the road and in simulated tests in order to develop a stable program.

The first cars are set to be on sale in three years.

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