- Are TikTok teens throwing up gang signs in their videos? 2 Years Ago
- Anti-impeachment protesters believe ‘deep state’ tried to sabotage rally Today 12:51 PM
- How to stream 49ers vs. Redskins in Week 7 Today 12:00 PM
- How to stream Cardinals vs. Giants in Week 7 Today 12:00 PM
- How to stream Packers vs. Raiders in Week 7 Today 12:00 PM
- How to stream Vikings vs. Lions in Week 7 Today 12:00 PM
- How to stream Rams vs. Falcons in Week 7 Today 12:00 PM
- Billie Eilish fans think they figured out who stole her ring Today 11:32 AM
- ‘Give me candy’: Hailey Bieber mocked for defense of celebrating Halloween as a Christian Today 10:28 AM
- Aaron Paul predicted Jesse Pinkman’s fate on Reddit years ago Today 8:53 AM
- Netflix’s ‘Eli’ is a satisfyingly nasty blend of haunted houses and medical horror Today 7:00 AM
- Why 8chan’s founder is fighting to keep the infamous message board dead Today 6:30 AM
- How to stream NFL Sunday Ticket without DirecTV Today 5:00 AM
- How to watch Arizona State vs. Utah Today 4:00 AM
- How to watch Michigan vs. Penn State Today 4:00 AM
The steering wheel may become obsolete sooner than we expected.
GM is asking the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for permission to test autonomous vehicles without steering wheels by 2019. The automaker has been testing its self-driving Chevy Bolt on the streets of San Francisco and Phoenix.
Its plans for the fourth-generation model, aka the Cruise AV (yes Cruise, not Cruze), are radical: No steering wheel, no pedals, no manual controls, and no driver. They also won’t have an owner since GM will deploy its self-driving car for ride-hailing, not personal use.
In its proposal, GM asks the administration for alternative ways to meet the 16 federal driver-based requirements for operating on public roads. If granted, the automaker would have an easier time deploying its vehicles in cities throughout the U.S., though it would still need approval on a state level. Currently only seven states—Michigan, North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Texas, Colorado, and Nevada—allow for testing vehicles without steering wheels or pedals.
GM said in a safety report that it’s working with industry groups to “advance the safety of self-driving vehicle technology.”
The announcement comes on the final day of the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, where dozens of tech and auto companies showed off plans to enable a self-driving future. Unlike some vehicles coming out of the electronics show, GM’s vision looks rather ordinary, a natural transition from today’s vehicles. As you can see in this concept video, the interior of the self-driving Bolt, or Cruise EV, looks nothing like the futuristic Byton or other over-the-top concepts we’ve seen over the years.
Without the need for a steering wheel or pedal, we wonder whether GM could take things a step further. Why do the seats need to face forward? Why is there still a center console between the driver and passenger? Why is the infotainment screen still in the center?
That said, this is a step in the right direction, and after all the failed concepts we’ve seen, a more practical approach may just what the industry needs. We expect to hear a lot more about the Cruise EV during the Detroit Auto Show next week.
Phillip Tracy is a former technology staff writer at the Daily Dot. He's an expert on smartphones, social media trends, and gadgets. He previously reported on IoT and telecom for RCR Wireless News and contributed to NewBay Media magazine. He now writes for Laptop magazine.