General Motors seeks United States approval for auto with no steering wheel

14 January, 2018, 00:32 | Author: Lora Ball
  • GM introduces self-driving car without a steering wheel

Other traditional automotive manufacturers, such as Ford (NYSE:F) or Audi (FWB: NSU), and new auto companies like Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA), as well as tech companies like Alphabet/Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), have worked on driverless vehicles technologies for years.

The Cruise AV is created to operate safely on its own, with no driver, steering wheel, pedals or other manual controls when it goes on the road in 2019.

The big difference between the existing Cruise vehicles and the upcoming Cruise AV is that this new version, the fourth generation, will be the first production-ready model purpose-built to drive itself. The company declined to say where it would like to launch the fleets, which customers would hail via an app and engage with via touchscreens inside the vehicles.

As the vehicle is entirely autonomous, the company said there was no need for a steering wheel or even a brake pedal. The dashboard looks identical to the Bolt EV sans steering wheel and pedal. GM executives said 7 U.S. states already allow the alterations sought by the automaker.

Moreover the General Motors vehicle will not be a prototype; the vehicle manufacturer aims to mass-produce these new types of self-driving cars and make them widely available to the public, especially in emerging smart cities with location software in place.

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Riders will use a Cruise AV mobile-app to hail the cars, which will launch in one unnamed USA city next year.

"We are asking NHTSA to give us permission to meet the safety standards through a different approach because we can't achieve them now without a human driver or steering wheel", Hemmersbaugh said. It has filed a petition with the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration to test the robocars. This report will provide details on GM's plans to safely deploy cars with self-driving tech on the road.

Cruise has driven "hundreds of thousands of complex urban miles" in the self-driving cars, Vogt has said.

Self-driving vehicles are allowed to be tested in seven states - Michigan, North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Texas, Colorado and Nevada. The company has said the accidents weren't caused by any of the GM cars.

It's worth mentioning that cars like this don't meet Federal Motor Vehicle's safety standards, but automakers are able to apply for exemption; however, the government can only exempt 2,500 vehicles every year.



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