Uber Self-Driving Cars Now In Phoenix After Getting Revoked By California; Uber’s Influence Diminishing, But Arizona Is Supporting [Video]By yasi bilangel, UniversityHerald Reporter
Uber is now hauling all of its modified Volvo XC90 cars to Phoenix after the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) revoked its license to operate the Uber self-driving cars that have no permits as test vehicles. Uber's clout seems diminished because DMV debunks its claim that they do not need special permits since a human driver is still behind the wheel.
However, Arizona Gov. Ducey fully supports testing of the vehicles in the state. Phoenix may be seeing the Uber self-driving cars in the coming days as Gov. Ducey has signed an Executive Order allowing the test vehicles to operate anywhere in the state. Just last September, Uber first deployed its modified cars in Pittsburgh where the pilot program was well-received.
A week ago, Uber self-driving cars caught the attention of the DMV and lawmakers when a viral video revealed that one of the cars ran through a red light in San Francisco. Uber answered by saying the error was due to the human driver, who has been subsequently penalized and suspended.
DMV insisted that Uber self-driving cars need permits to operate in California just like 20 other companies like Tesla, Ford, BMW and Honda according to CNet. Uber refused to comply saying that the DMV rule does not necessarily apply to them because they still have human drivers behind the wheel supervising.
Yesterday, Uber self-driving cars conceded, a surprising act when the company has been known to launch products without asking permits, prompting speculations that Uber is already diminishing its clout in the country. However, Uber found a new home in Arizona with mandated support, most likely stemming from last year's collaboration between Uber and the College of Optical Science of the University of Arizona to research on optics space mapping, Fortune reported.
Nonetheless, Uber has maintained that they are still committed 100 percent to bring the Uber self-driving cars in California. DMV's Jean Shimoto indicated as much being ready to assist Uber to acquire the permits, which could just take 72 hours to process.