It looks like GM’s ultramodern drone by the name of Cruise AV is almost the same as a regular car: the fact is that the basis for its creation was the serial electric car Chevrolet Bolt. The only visible difference is the lack of a steering wheel and pedals, as the car was supposed to be completely autonomous.
In order to make sure of the potential of the project, its creators need to bring it to the “field” tests. And this requires the approval of regulators, in particular, the American National Highway Traffic Administration. Meanwhile, the legal conflict that the agency had to deal with was extremely unusual, and the NHTSA cannot make a final decision for more than a year.
According to Reuters, the question of continuing the project is being decided at the level of the head of General Motors and the US Secretary of Transportation. However, in order for the drone to approve access to the roads, those who have the right to make decisions must make sure that it is safe.
In addition, a number of issues still need to be resolved, including the one that prevents the active use of unmanned vehicles – who will be responsible in case of an accident. The current standards requiring drone testers to drive and control the traffic situation simply do not apply for an obvious reason – due to the lack of a steering wheel.
GM is hopeful that it will be possible to get regulatory approval over the next year. This will allow the concern to build an entire test fleet and begin the phase of active testing Cruise. It is possible that drones will begin to create a new segment of transport – Robotaxi.