After Waymo, Nuro and AutoX, the self-driving technology start-up Zoox, which had just been purchased by Amazon, received a license from the Californian DMV to operate autonomous cars without safety drivers on public roads. This makes the company the fourth to be allowed to test in this way.
As the DMV stated, the license is valid for a portion of Foster City, where Zoox is eadgquartered.
While Zoox has had state authority to test autonomous vehicles with safety drivers since 2016, the new permit allows the company to test two autonomous vehicles without a driver behind the wheel on specified streets near its Foster City headquarters. The vehicles are approved to operate in fair weather conditions (light rain/fog) on streets with a speed limit of no more than 45 mph.
A total of 66 companies now have permits to test self-driving cars on all public roads in California. However, with the exception of the four companies, they are still required to have safety drivers on board.
Here is an example of the sounds Zoox vehicles make to communicate with their surroundings.
This article was also published in German.