DEARBORN, Michigan – Ford, Hyundai and Kia are taking the next steps with their self-driving car programs and getting the vehicles ready for real-world testing on U.S. roads.
A fully autonomous Ford Fusion Hybrid sedan will be deployed on public roads in California starting next year, Ford announced this week.
Ford said it is officially enrolled in the California Autonomous Vehicle Tester Program.
Other companies certified to test self-driving cars on California roads include BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Tesla and Google.
Hyundai said it has started the first tests of a fully autonomous Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell Electric vehicle on public roads in Nevada.
The Korean automaker said it “plans to evaluate partially and fully autonomous driving technologies in Nevada, monitoring the car’s performance in real-world conditions, an important part of its roadmap for autonomous driving.”
Hyundai’s sister company Kia also has been granted a license by Nevada to carry out testing of its self-driving technologies in the state.
The Kia Soul EV’s advanced driver assistance systems will be tested in Beatty, Nevada, as the automaker aims to bring its first fully autonomous vehicle to market by 2030.
Kia also intends to introduce partially autonomous driving technologies to its vehicles by 2020.
In the meantime, the California Department of Motor Vehicles is proposing greater restrictions on the testing of self-driving cars.
Edmunds says: Driverless cars continue to roll out on American roads, even as the debate continues about their safety.