California’s Department of Motor Vehicles is in a legal tussle with Uber. The ride-sharing company argues it doesn’t need a permit to test its self-driving cars in San Francisco. The DMV says: Oh yes you do.
Uber argues its vehicles aren’t really autonomous, but more like fancy Teslas, which can automatically stay in their lanes and keep up with traffic, but still need human drivers.
“The law is somewhat ambiguous when it defines autonomous technology.” Says San Jose attorney Stephen Wu.
Wu specializes in self-driving cars. He says Uber may be stretching things a bit, since the law says test vehicles need human monitors. But Wu says the 60 billion dollar company is also nudging the state to be more tech-friendly, bro.
“It’s kind of implying that California may lose out on some of those benefits if it needs to move its testing somewhere else,” says Wu.
The state has issued 20 permits to companies like Google, Nissan and Ford. If Uber doesn’t comply, the state Attorney General has threatened to step in.