Earlier this year we reported on the construction of an empty city that was built purely as a testing ground for self-driving cars. Four months later, and Ford has become the first company to take to the roads of ‘Mcity’.

Situated at the University of Michigan, Mcity is the world’s first full-scale simulated real-world urban environment and is where Ford is testing its Fusion Hybrid Autonomous Research Vehicle.

Click play on the video above to see how the car’s drive around Mcity went.

Many self-driving cars are being tested on public roads, but Ford believes that it can accelerate development time by putting the car’s cameras, radar, LiDAR sensors and real-time 3D mapping technology in a realistic neighbourhood without people.

[Related story: From dangerous swerves to dodging an old lady: Are we really ready to embrace self-driving cars?]

Mcity has everything you’d expect to see in a city, from buildings and traffic lights to trees and bike lanes.

“Testing Ford’s autonomous vehicle fleet at Mcity provides another challenging, yet safe, urban environment to repeatedly check and hone these new technologies,” said Raj Nair, Ford vice president Global Product Development.

“This is an important step in making millions of people’s lives better and improving their mobility.”

Self-driving cars are being developed by a number of manufacturers, including Google. One of its vehicles was recently pulled over by police for driving too slowly.

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