This paper presents a systematic design of high-fidelity tele-operated scaled vehicles to be used as a research and development platform for intelligent transportation technologies. Compared to computer simulation and full-scale physical tests, the use of high-fidelity scaled setups provides advantages on testing time and financial effectiveness. The physical design of the vehicles features a 1:14 scale with realistic appearance licensed by car manufacturers. Customized steering system and propulsion control provide high-fidelity maneuver characteristics. Remote control is deployed using a target-host structure over WiFi and can provide seamless switching between human driving and autonomous/assisted driving on the host side. Several possible solutions for real-time panoramic vision feedback are explored, with a tri-camera design based on parallel acquisition interfaces adopted. An adaptive color compression technique is developed to shorten the video streaming latency. A customized miniature LIDAR system is introduced to provide an ultra-small package for on-board installation. As a solution balancing between test fidelity and costs, the proposed scaled vehicles are especially suitable for validation tests during the early stage of research and development. With a long-term goal of developing a multi-vehicle traffic network test platform, ongoing and future work on the construction of scaled buildings and road systems is also discussed.

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