Also called ‘autonomous pods’, they’ll be able to carry up to ten passengers at a time…

The Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has begun testing the world’s first driverless taxis.

The taxis, which are also known as autonomous pods, are designed to travel short to medium distances, carrying up to ten passengers per pod.

The cleverly designed system also means that the pods can be coupled together or detached, depending on the destination of drivers. So at times, rather than a taxi, the pods can couple together to look more like a driverless bus.

Once attached, travelers will be able to freely move between the pods, as well as taking advantage of complimentary Wi-Fi. 

The taxis are fitted with a battery that supports three hours of operation that will take six hours to charge. Though don’t expect to be zooming too fast across the city – the average speed is 20 kilometres per hour. 

Check out this video by the RTA, which shows you how the pods will work:

HE Mattar Al Tayer of the RTA said: “The success of initial tests of these units will bring about a breakthrough in transportation systems that offer innovative mobility solutions and ease snarls in the city”.

The launch of the first test of the autonomous pods co-insided with the World Government Summit, which saw several celebrities descend on Dubai alongside a host of major world leaders.

A launch date for Dubai’s driverless taxis has not yet been confirmed.

– For more about Dubai straight to your newsfeed, follow us on Facebook

Images: Dubai Media Office