Rating Firm to Help Autopilot Systems to Be Ready for Prime Time

In a recent wired.com story, Jack Stewert calls out Elon Musk about access to autonomous vehicles. In spite of the hype, he asserts, it’s still not possible walk into a dealership and buy a fully autonomous car.

“…nobody’s close to delivering a product that can take humans anywhere they want to go. Not even Tesla. That may come as a surprise if you’ve browsed websites or glossy marketing materials filled with claims of cars driving themselves, relieving the driver of the mundane tasks of steering and braking.

A paper released by influential UK nonprofit called Thatcham Research, which does vehicle assessments in much the same as the IIHS does in the U.S., calls for car manufacturers to meet standards for autopilot programs. Called “Assisted and Automated Driving Definition and Assessment,” Thatcham’s report will be the basis of rating driver-assistance features like Tesla’s Autopilot.

The company will study situations and functions of the programs and how well companies monitor their human drivers.

“It’s the Wild West out there, so we’re saying, let’s get some rules around this, because people’s lives are at stake,” says Matthew Avery, Thatcham’s head of research.

Thatcham’s rankings will push manufacturers to meet its standards and earn high safety marks because ratings influence consumer buying choices and the premiums that insurers charge.

read more at wired.com