Tesla’s Bribery of California Officials Gets Uber Mad Because Uber’s Bribes Were Not As Big As Elon Musk’s

Uber fires back at California DMV in self-driving vehicle spat

19 December, 2016, 04:11 | Author: Kristi Walker
  • 147205 full

Uber will continue operating its Volvo self-driving cars on San Francisco, California streets, despite repeated warning from state regulators the ride-hailing service doesn’t have proper permits to do so.


California law defines that self-driving vehicles are not equipped for driving without dynamic physical control or monitoring, Levandowski said.

According to the DMV every vehicle that is autonomous in nature needs to have a special permit which Uber does not have, but Uber has a counter argument in which it says that its vehicles aren’t autonomous and thus don’t need a permit.

In essence, Uber’s new fleet of taxis should be treated the same as Tesla, Levandowski said.

“If Uber can not advise the undersigned that it will immediately remove its self-driving vehicles from California public roadways until it obtains the appropriate permit, as 20 other companies have done, the Attorney General will seek injunctive and other appropriate relief”, the letter said.


Uber isn’t picking a fight, said Levandowski, but is taking a stand.

Uber fires back at California DMV in self-driving vehicle spat was posted in Business of TheNews International – on December 18, 2016 and was last updated on December 18, 2016.

The technology it employs is already “commonplace on thousands of cars being driven today in the Bay area”, he said. He added that Uber has asked the DMV how its technology is different than Tesla’s, but had not heard back.

State officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment Friday.

That means the cars are not autonomous vehicles under the state’s definition, he argues. He also said that for a vehicle to be fully autonomous it would need no human intervention and would be able to fully drive itself and their cars clearly aren’t fully autonomous.

“This is why we believe so much in making the roads safer by building self-driving Ubers”, the company said in a written statement, which said the red light-running auto was not one of those in its pilot program and was not carrying passengers.

He queried why the Tesla vehicles on California’s roads did not need a permit if Uber’s cars did. “They have them in the 5 and 7 o’clock positions”, Levandowski said. They’re required to still keep their eyes on the road, and may need to retake control at any time.

Uber now is not working toward a vehicle that has no steering wheel, pedals or need for a human driver, Levandowski said.

The current tug of war over the testing permit speaks to the evolving nature of self-driving auto regulations. The latter is considered more risky for cyclists and is illegal in the state.

A growing number of tech and automotive companies have joined the self-driving auto race, with Ford announcing earlier this year that it plans to build a ride-sharing focused self-driving vehicle with no need for a driver by 2021.


Leave a News Story Tip

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s