Cruise wants to test self-driving cars across California

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors’ autonomous-vehicle unit Cruise on Monday asked California for permission to test the cars statewide.

The GM subsidiary is already operating an autonomous ride-hailing service in its hometown of San Francisco after more than two years of testing. It doesn’t yet have specific plans to expand testing in California, but applying with the Department of Motor Vehicles is one step toward entry into cities like Los Angeles.

“While this application does not represent any immediate changes to our testing or operations, we hope to continue working with the California DMV to safely and responsibly test our services in other cities in the future,” said Cruise spokesperson Drew Pusateri in a statement.

If granted, the test permit will not allow Cruise to carry non-employee passengers outside of San Francisco. The tests could be done at up to 55 miles per hour (88 kilometers per hour) statewide, Cruise said.

Cruise also tested Chevrolet Bolt self-driving electric vehicles and transported employees, friends and family around downtown Austin, Texas, and parts of Phoenix.

The GM subsidiary is under investigation by US safety regulators over reports that its autonomous robot taxi may stop unexpectedly, potentially stranding passengers. Cruise says he is collaborating on the probe and has traveled 1 million autonomous miles (1.6 million autonomous kilometers) without causing life-threatening injuries or deaths.

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