General Motors Company’s (NYSE: GM) autonomous vehicle manufacturing subsidiary Cruise LLC, has received the permit from the California Department of Motor Vehicles to begin testing its electric self-driving vehicles in San Francisco. The company plans to begin on-road testing of unmanned vehicles on the streets by the end of 2020 – CNBC reports.
"We’re not the first company to receive this permit, but we’re going to be the first to put it to use on the streets of a major U.S. city," wrote Cruise CEO Dan Ammann in a blog post.
What Happened: The California Department of Motor Vehicles approved the autonomous vehicle testing in San Francisco, albeit without a human driver on board. "Safely removing the driver is the true benchmark of a self-driving car," Ammann wrote.
He added that it is important for automakers to eliminate fossil fuel dependency and claimed that Cruise cars have a zero-carbon emission rate.
In his former role as President of GM, Amman was instrumental in acquiring Cruise and raising $7.25 billion in committed capital.
Why Does It Matter: Ammann said that pollution, accidents, congestion, and poor accessibility are some of the factors contributing to the transportation crisis. An autonomous vehicle powered by renewable energy is a novel solution to these problems.
Before Cruise, Alphabet Inc’s (NASDAQ: GOOGL) (NASDAQ: GOOG) subsidiary Waymo LLC, Chinese software start-up AutoX Technologies, Amazon Inc’s (NASDAQ: AMZN) Zoox, and California headquartered robotics company Nuro received such a permit.
Price Action: GM shares gained 2.97% on Thursday to close at $32.59.
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