Tesla might be the best known brand in terms of autonomous driving. The company advertises that its cars have already done over 200 million kilometers on public roads. The Tesla fleet, however, ist part of SAE class 2. Despite the cars only being partly autonomous, a first death occured end of June. A 62 year old died in his Tesla S, with “Autopilot” engaged.
This accident has re-ignited the debate around the safety and safety requirements of self driving cars. A study of RAND Corporation shows that some time will pass, until valid proof exists.
According to the study, autonomous cars need to drive at least 443 million kilometers to statistically prove that they do not cause more fatal accidents then human drivers do.
Yet car manufacturers and tech companies – Tesla at the forefront – are not hindered by these concerns in pushing towards production of self driving cars of class 3 and above. Experts expect widespread and worldwide ability in the mass market by 2020 at the latest.24