Science

General Motors to build cars without steering in 2019

General Motors to build cars without steering in 2019”

General Motors Co is seeking the United States government's approval for a fully autonomous vehicle - one without a steering wheel, brake pedal or accelerator pedal - to enter the automaker's first commercial ride-sharing fleet in 2019, executives said.

Will 2018 be the year that driverless cars take off around the world? For instance, the autonomous Bolts will have no steering-wheel-mounted airbag because they have no steering wheel.

The FMVSS exemption, if granted, would theoretically give GM the ability to test these steering-wheel-less cars on public roads across the country.

GM is far from the only company testing level 4 vehicles.

GM sees self-driving fleets of vehicles as a high-growth opportunity, and new paths for revenue are especially key to automakers as auto sales have started to slow down in the US after several years of increases.

This will be one of the first self-driving vehicles in commercial passenger service and among the first to do away with manual controls for steering, brakes and throttle. D'uh. "A vehicle without a steering wheel can't have a steering wheel airbag", Ammann said.

Manufacturers can get around those standards by petitioning NHTSA for exemptions, provided they demonstrate that the exempted vehicle will be at least as safe as a conventional one. Both are created to survive in the event of a catastrophic accident. It has acquired Cruise Automation, a San Francisco based self-driving startup, as well as Strobe, another startup that specializes in Lidar technology.

Like Alphabet's self-driving cars, these Cruise cars [example, pictured above] will communicate with riders via an on-demand ride-hail app as well as in-car tablets. It also plans to introduce up to 20 new EVs by 2023. The production-ready model uses an electric drivetrain. Compared to the crude Lost In Space type arrays that sprout from the autonomous cars being tested by Waymo, Uber, General Motors, and others, Tesla's sensor suite is virtually invisible to the untrained eye. If there's a problem, the vehicle will slow down, pull over to the roadside and stop. "We intend to launch a commercial ride-share service at commercial scale in 2019".



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