GM has just announced that it will start road testing of its autonomous vehicles in China, as it recently obtained a permit from the authorities to carry out the first AV tests on public roads in the Asian country.
The company has been awarded the road test permit for Shanghai’s Intelligent Connected Vehicle (ICV), which enables GM’s Level 4 autonomous vehicles to operate on the city’s public roads to accelerate the development of automated mobility technologies meeting with all applicable laws. The AV tests will be carried out on Cadillac Lyriq units equipped with solutions for the Chinese market developed in conjunction with tech startup Momenta.
“We look forward to conducting real-world AV road testing in Shanghai with safety as our overriding priority,” said Executive Director of GM China Engineering Center, Chris Kinser. “This will take GM’s global vision of zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion one step closer to reality in China, the world’s largest vehicle market,” he added.
GM announced that the pilot program will begin with a year of AV testing, primarily in a designated area of Shanghai’s Jinqiao district – right where the company’s headquarters and GM China Advanced Technical Center are located. In fact, this is the first area open to AV road testing in a Chinese megacity, where Cadillac Lyriq AVs will experience the most complex and sophisticated driving scenarios with a safety driver on board.
AV road tests allow to demonstrate the advances of autonomous driving technology for its application in production, personally owned vehicles at scale and its natural integration with the Ultium EV architecture. In addition, Momenta’s artificial intelligence to speed up algorithm iteration will advance GM’s fleet to the higher levels of on-road testing and operation set out in the Shanghai ICV development guidelines.
The goal of the AV testing program is to implement the technology safely and deliver real benefits to customers, including continuous improvements to driver assistance solutions. “The road test will help the local team achieve better understanding of China’s road conditions, traffic regulations and people’s driving habits,” said Chief Technology Officer of GM China, Stanley Song. “That will accelerate development and delivery of solutions customized for the Chinese market,” he finished.