Fatal Accident With Autonomous Test Vehicle from BMW

An electric BMW iX marked as an “autonomous test vehicle” veered off its lane in a curve in Römerstein in the Reutlingen district in Germany and crashed into oncoming traffic. The 43-year-old driver struck the vehicle of a 70-year-old. The latter subsequently drove head-on into the car of a 32-year-old man, killing him and causing his car to immediately catch fire.

In the car of the vehicle causing the accident, in addition to the 43-year-old, there were two men aged 31 and 47, as well as a 42-year-old woman and a one and a half year old child. They were all seriously injured, bringing the total to 9 injured people. A total of four helicopters and ten ambulances were at the scene.

BMW said in a statement – although the accident vehicle had “autonomous test vehicle” stickers with a camera symbol on it – that this was not an autonomous vehicle, but one with Level 2 ADAS. Some examples of such stickers can be seen in the photos above.

Here is the wreckage with the sticker “www.bmw.com/autonomousdriving” and the inscription “Electric Test Vehicle”.

Nevertheless, it is unclear what these vehicles are really testing, and why a child had been along for the ride in such a test vehicle.

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This article was also published in German.

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