"We think the technology is going to have a huge impact on the world", GM President Dan Ammann said during a conference call. General Motors has just announced plans to launch its own public ride-hailing services with self-driving vehicles that don't have any manual controls such as steering wheels and pedals at all, and it intends them to begin operating as soon as 2019.
A concept video released by General Motors shows a auto very similar to what we see now, only that the driver's seat now becomes another passenger seat with no steering wheel or pedals.
The Cruise AV, based on the Chevrolet Bolt, utilizes five LiDARs, 16 cameras, and 21 radars-including articulating radars, long-range radars, and short-range radars-to ensure capabilities in complex environments. The move is a bold one, however, since all self-driving cars to date have had the safety features that enable the driver to take back control should an incident arise. Thus, San Francisco challenges our self-driving system more because, as the number of objects increase, there are exponentially more possible interactions with objects that the self- driving system must consider. "And [Mercedes Benz' Christoph] von Hugo says the coolness of self-driving cars will help convince the public that the coming EVs will be worthwhile".
GM will run the cars in a test batch for a ride-sharing program starting in 2019, and they won't be without a safety net.
The company has filed a petition with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, requesting exemptions from 16 safety standards. For example, with vehicle manufacturers such as Volvo, Tesla and BMW, driverless cars are seen as the future of driving and have altered the future manufacturing strategy of these firms.
If NHTSA approves GM's petition for their machine-only cars, the company will still need to get permission from different states to legally run them.
The Cruise AV has 360-degree vision, both night and day, GM says. That's the maximum number the government will now allow for each manufacturer. Currently, only seven states allow the technology to be tested without a safety driver, said Paul Hemmersbaugh, GM's chief counsel and policy director for transportation as a service.