1/10th scale RC-style car: Donkey

Donkey: Adam Conway/William Roscoe’s RaspberryPi CNN-based car

This car was designed to be as simple. It uses a single camera and all the code is python. Current capabilities include: line/lane following, avoiding objects on sidewalks, and remote control via a mobile phone.

Full build instructions are here


Required  components:


The Donkey library was created to control this car. Its features include:

  • Remote control car with a virtual joystick on your phone.
  • Records image and telemetry data.
  • Data pipeline for training autopilots using Keras Autopilot.
  • Code and instructions here


Hobby car platforms:

  • Hobby King 1/16 mini rally car  – This car is small but handles very well and can soak up some bumps.  
  • 1/10 Trooper Pro – A fast offroad car, but might be a bit loose for high speed road driving – CAD files available for a mounting plate and roll bar.  Currently Adam Conway is using this car.  


Tips for choosing a car:

  • No need to get the “RTR” versions, these come with a transmitter(remote control).  It is unlikely you will need or be able to use the remote that comes with these models.  Choose the “ARR” version which typically comes with everything but a battery and TX/RX.
  • Choose an ESC with a “UBEC” this will power your servo board connected to the raspberry pi, however will not power the raspberry pi.  
  • 4WD is nearly free in most cars now.  While it will take a while for us to get cars fast enough to take advantage of this for performance, it does improve braking performance, which is important immediately.


One thought on “1/10th scale RC-style car: Donkey”

  1. Hi all,

    I am just getting started with building one of these platforms. In addition to the donkey library, I would like to use a more powerful computer and ROS to do control and more autonomous behaviors.

    Has anyone tried using ROS with this setup? I have experience with ROS but not much experience with interfacing hardware. Suggestions will be much appreciated

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