Autonomous vehicle companies from Tesla to General Motors Cruise are racing to start making money from their technology, outpacing efforts by regulators and Congress to write road rules for robot-powered vehicles.
On Tuesday, Cruise said that SoftBank Group will invest another $1.35 billion (approximately Rs. 10,098 crore) in anticipation of Cruise launching robo-taxi business operations.
Cruise needs a permit, from the California Public Utilities Commission, to begin charging for trips around San Francisco in vehicles without a human driver.
Cruise, Tesla, Alphabet’s Waymo and Aurora Innovation are among many companies looking to roll out fully autonomous vehicle technology in the United States within the next two to three years, whether or not federal regulators give them a clear legal framework to do so.
do it. Autonomous vehicle (AV) startups and automakers are under pressure to start generating revenue from billions of dollars of engineering investment over the past decade.
Proposed legislation to create a national framework of rules to govern self-driving vehicles remains stalled in Congress, despite industry lobbying. That has left autonomous vehicle companies free to deploy robot taxis or self-driving trucks in some states, like Arizona and Texas, but not in others. Waymo has provided thousands of driverless robot taxi rides in Phoenix, though service remains limited.
Providing guardrails is helpful at the federal level,” said Chris Urmson, chief executive officer of the automated vehicle technology company Aurora Innovation. “Today we have different regulations in all 50 states.
Aurora is testing its Aurora Driver on Class 8 trucks, but so far it can’t operate those trucks in California without human drivers. That eliminates a potentially rich market for self-driving trucking companies that haul cargo from Southern California to eastern distribution centers.
We look at the Port of Los Angeles … and the supply chain challenges that we see. There’s a real urgency for this technology” to address the truck driver shortage, Urmson told an audience at the Washington Auto Show on Thursday. last month.
Audio-visual industry lobbyist Ariel Wolf told a US House panel on Tuesday that self-driving trucks “will not lead to mass layoffs.” Instead, he said, autonomous trucks driving long-distance routes will allow human drivers “to spend more nights in their own beds rather than sleeping in a truck.