GM unit says it has 'mass producible' autonomous cars

September 11, 2017
Kyle Vogt, CEO of General Motors' unit Cruise Automation, speaking at a July conference, announced on Monday that the auto giant is ready to roll out "mass producible" autonomous cars

The General Motors unit developing autonomous vehicles said Monday it has begun rolling out the first "mass producible" self-driving cars that could be available once regulations allow.

"This isn't just a concept design — it has airbags, crumple zones, and comfortable seats," said Kyle Vogt, who heads Cruise Automation, a technology startup acquired by GM in 2016.

Vogt said in a blog post on Medium that the cars are being made "in a high-volume assembly plant" capable of producing hundreds of thousands of vehicles per year.

GM is now in position to begin delivering and deploying on a large scale when regulations are in place to permit their operation.

The US House of Representatives last week passed a bill aiming for a consistent national framework for self-driving cars across the 50 US states. And US Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao was expected to make an announcement on autonomous technology this week.

Vogt said the car unveiled Monday is the third iteration of the , with some elements borrowed from the Bolt electric model and will be produced at GM's Orion Lake plant in Michigan.

"It's the first that meets the redundancy and safety requirements we believe are necessary to operate without a driver," he said. "There's no other car like this in existence."

He added that these cars will be deployed in several weeks to carry Cruise employees in San Francisco, but that for now there will still be a human behind the wheel.

"The launch of the world's first mass-producible driverless car is a major accomplishment, but we're not across the finish line yet," Vogt said.

"We will achieve success by integrating the best software and hardware to deploy truly driverless vehicles at scale."

Explore further: GM buys software company to speed autonomous car development

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rderkis
3 / 5 (2) Sep 11, 2017
This is great! Autonomous cars are coming faster than anyone can imagine. :-)
I am 70 and excited about making car trips again that are only one hundred to 400 hundred miles away.
There is a vary old picture of times square from the top of a building. There are hundreds of horse drawn carriages on the road with only one motor car. 13 years later same square, same time of day, and same building. There are hundreds of motor cars on the roads with only one horse drawn carriage. Only THIRTEEN years! Thing move/change much faster nowadays. :-) Plus I look forward to the drastic reduction insurance once human drivers are not allowed on the roads.
barakn
1 / 5 (2) Sep 11, 2017
Autonomous vehicles will become the favorite weapons of terrorists.
rderkis
5 / 5 (2) Sep 12, 2017
Autonomous vehicles will become the favorite weapons of terrorists.


And how is that different from guns, bombs, machetes, knifes, cars, busses, subways, trucks etc?
antialias_physorg
2 / 5 (1) Sep 12, 2017
I don't get this fixation on autonomous driving. Electric cars - yes, that is something people have been asking for for decades. But autonomous driving? Who really wanted this? OK, I can see older people making use of it, but the mass market?

People want a cheap car that can get them from A to B. People already know how to drive (and it's not really a difficult skill to learn).
Adding all these cameras, radar and big processing power (as well as the R&D cost for developing the autopilot software) does not make a car cheaper.
Instead of adding the tech for autonomous driving just lower the price a bit or add a bit more battery. I think that would increase sales a lot more.

Wait with autopilots until we have flying cars. They are a LOT easier to implement then.
TheGhostofOtto1923
5 / 5 (2) Sep 12, 2017
Autonomous vehicles will become the favorite weapons of terrorists
-because it's easier to hack a car than to get in and drive one ahahaaa.

AI robotic design and manufacturing is making complexity cheap. The new Mercedes hypercar uses engine and trans as structural elements. Unprecedented integration that humans could never design or build will make luxury and performance affordable, disposable.
But autonomous driving? Who really wanted this?
Insurance companies. End of story.
barakn
1 / 5 (1) Sep 12, 2017
Autonomous vehicles will become the favorite weapons of terrorists.


And how is that different from guns, bombs, machetes, knifes, cars, busses, subways, trucks etc?

Because the terrorist no longer has to be in the car and will not have to commit suicide and will face lower risk of being caught.
rderkis
5 / 5 (2) Sep 12, 2017
Because the terrorist no longer has to be in the car and will not have to commit suicide and will face lower risk of being caught.


Perhaps I misunderstood, I thought they wanted to be martyrs. That's why they use a knife in a world filled with guns.
Besides an autonomous car that's operating properly can not be directed to hit people or break the speed limit. As computers get better it will be more and more difficult to hack them.
Zzzzzzzz
5 / 5 (2) Sep 12, 2017
Autonomous vehicles will become the favorite weapons of terrorists.


And how is that different from guns, bombs, machetes, knifes, cars, busses, subways, trucks etc?

Because the terrorist no longer has to be in the car and will not have to commit suicide and will face lower risk of being caught.

I thought the reward for suicide was the justification.....
Zzzzzzzz
5 / 5 (2) Sep 12, 2017
I don't get this fixation on autonomous driving. Electric cars - yes, that is something people have been asking for for decades. But autonomous driving? Who really wanted this? OK, I can see older people making use of it, but the mass market?


I can make a list:
1. Productive commute times - use that time to do something other than drive
2. Better traffic flows - once autonomous cars are using the highways, the human driver induced traffic surges will be managed by computers, and driving times will get better certainty of outcome.
3. Safety - you say that driving skills aren't that hard to learn, but I see people that are clearly more challenged by them than they should be, many of them every day. Could tie back to item 1 in many cases....
4. Convenience - all the above will generally add up to convenience. People are willing to pay a lot for it.....
CubicAdjunct747
1 / 5 (1) Sep 12, 2017
I just keep admiring at those old movies like Christine and The Car, how prophetic they were? So scary to 70's people. Now driverless cars will be hacked for fun creating real devil cars.
rderkis
2.3 / 5 (3) Sep 12, 2017
Now driverless cars will be hacked for fun creating real devil cars.


As if you knew what you were talking about and could hack any computer code. Once AI reaches a certain level, no human will be able to hack it's code anymore than a human could beat it at GO or chess.
And yes to your next comment. I can program in 5 computer languages including assembly and mixed languages. So I do know what I am talking about.
antialias_physorg
not rated yet Sep 13, 2017
1. Productive commute times - use that time to do something other than drive
2. Better traffic flows - once autonomous cars are using the highways, the human driver induced traffic surges will be managed by computers, and driving times will get better certainty of outcome.
3. Safety - you say that driving skills aren't that hard to learn, but I see people that are clearly more challenged by them than they should be, many of them every day. Could tie back to item 1 in many cases....
4. Convenience - all the above will generally add up to convenience. People are willing to pay a lot for it.....

1. Since currently the law says you have to keep your hands on the wheel and eyes on the road - even with autopilot enaged - I don't see a way to use the time productivley. Neither sleeping nor work seems possible (and you also can't use it as a 'designated vehicle' after having a few drinks)
3. Dunning Kruger means those who need it will not buy it and vice versa.
antialias_physorg
not rated yet Sep 13, 2017
4. Convenience - all the above will generally add up to convenience. People are willing to pay a lot for it.....

I don't know if people have a lot of money to splurge on these kinds of non-essential extras. From what I see the main selling point of a car is the price.
(I'm certainly not gonna shell out the extra 9000 EUR for a first level autopilot upgrade and a an unknown amount for the full autopilot later on in my next car. That'd be 25-30% of the car's worth just for a feature that has negligible benefit)

Maybe for the elderly who can still drive but think it's too stressful. But at first I'd like to see automakers focus on getting EVs to the market and *then* worry about toy features - not shove them in as extra cost (even just R&D cost) in even the most basic model.

I have nothing against making cars autonomous eventually but automakers are taking two steps where they should be taking one.
They might price themselves out of a merket segment by adding bling

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