Germany wants to be the first to commercialise autonomous vehicles

Germany is developing legislation to be first to commercialize Level 4 autonomous vehicles

Germany wants to be the first to commercialise autonomous vehicles

DESPITE last week claiming that Tesla’s autonomous cars (stating that they are not truly self-driving) needed re-marketing, the German courts are looking to push forward legislation that will allow them to commercialise and regulate level 4 autonomous vehicles.

According to a report by Automotive News Europe (ANE), the framework is currently being reviewed by the transportation ministry and other government departments. All being well, the legislation could be ready for next summer.

Level 4 autonomous vehicles are those that can take full control of a vehicle under specific conditions, such as in a geo-fenced area. They are also claimed to be able to detect and react to the weather, other road users, different types of road surfaces, and varying types of road.

“The planned new legal framework should create the prerequisites in the current legislative period to allow for the standard operation of autonomous, driverless motorized vehicles on public roads, limited geographically to a defined environment,” the German transportation ministry told ANE.

Systems such as this are well into the late stages of development in the US, although Europe, the UK included, has lagged behind in the development and consideration of where the technology could end up. The fact that Germany is trying to take the lead on the matter, Europe has no formal rules or regulation around the use of autonomous vehicles in a commercial setting, means they can crack on and make the rules for the rest of the continent.

Self-driving or autonomous vehicles have come under fire in recent years after a series of high-profile incidents with other road users, allegedly caused by the vehicles not 'seeing' certain vulnerable road users. It has already been reported by Visordown that in some circumstances, the Tesla self-driving system would not notice motorcyclists filtering between traffic.