GM is dropping the steering wheel in autonomous cars

Meet the Cruise AV, GM's First Production-Ready Driverless Car

How GM's Cruise AV works

Among the standards are rules for rearview mirrors, accelerator pedals and more - features missing in GM's control-free vehicle.

The vehicle will be the fourth generation of its driverless, all-electric Chevy Bolts. Eventually, it should serve in ride-hailing services in cities across the U.S. Testing in the busy streets of San Francisco, one of the most complex driving environments in the world, gave the world's largest automaker the confidence that it was time to remove manual controls, according to the safety report.

At a November 30 briefing in San Francisco, GM's Ammann told investors the lifetime revenue generation of one of its self-driving cars could eventually be "several hundred thousands of dollars". Most of GM's hydrogen-powered vehicles will most likely be ambulances or delivery trucks.

GM said that it has filed a safety petition with the Department of Transportation for the vehicle, which the company claims is now "production-ready". It says these aren't relevant because the vehicle doesn't have manual controls.


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.

"What we can do is put the equivalent of the passenger side airbag on that side as well", he said. In an interesting twist, GM's supporting documentation on its self-driving vehicle efforts [PDF] detail that your personalized radio station settings and climate controls will be synced when you book a ride. Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety and the Consumer Federation of America are releasing a poll today that shows "significant and widespread concerns" among the USA public about the development and deployment of self-driving cars. Cruise accounted for 22 of the 27 autonomous vehicle crashes in California in 2017. Cruise's auto had to navigate construction blocking the lane more than 18 times as often in the Bay Area and had to deal with emergency vehicles 270 times, versus six Phoenix encounters, according to the report.

GM plans to deploy its self-driving vehicles first for ride-sharing service.

Obtaining a federal waiver would permit GM to operate the vehicles in the seven or so states that don't already have laws that restrict such vehicles. Zoox and Waymo have also tested Level 4 cars, but with a backup driver at the helm in case of an emergency.

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