After the Chinese-American start-up AutoX became the 3rd company to receive a Californian test license for driverless driving, I received some more details from the company. The company currently has more than 100 vehicles in test operation, 8 of which are operated in California and the rest in Shenzhen and Shanghai. The company started with Lincoln MKZs, followed by Fiat-Chrysler in San José. In China, the BYD Qin Pro electric car and a Great Wall Motors SUV have also been used. More Fiat Chrysler minivans will be added to the fleet. Those vans enjoy great popularity with other self-driving technology companies like Waymo and Voyage.
The sensor design, which resembles Apple’s design and looks like an oversized iPad on the roof, is the 4th hardware generation. The 5th hardware generation, which is supposed to have better computer and sensor performance, will be released soon, then there will be more information about the performance metrics of the sensors and processors.
For the driverless test drives, California DMV has approved the streets around the AutoX branch at 441 West Trimble Road in San Jose. Passengers are not yet on board, as the COVID-10 regulations require that social distancing measures be observed.
The start-up sees itself less as an operator of an autonomous van or robot taxi fleet and more as a technology supplier and partner for OEMs and fleet operators.
This article was also published in German.