DeepRoute will begin testing self-driving vehicles in California; gets step closer to full vehicle autonomy on roads

International self-driving vehicle company, DeepRoute announced Monday that it has received an Autonomous Vehicle Testing (AVT) permit from the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). The permit enables DeepRoute to test its autonomous vehicle fleet under the supervision of experienced safety operators, advancing the company in the competitive race with Silicon Valley rivals to bring self-driving vehicles to the public. 

The company will begin test drives in the Silicon Valley area with their L4 full-stack self-driving system, which allows passengers to travel from point A to point B. DeepRoute was founded by an experienced team with a track record of technological innovation in multiple companies, including Google, Microsoft, and Ford. The company operates out of research centers located in Shenzhen, Beijing, and Silicon Valley, California.

The company’s initial fleet of autonomous vehicles in California will help to reinforce the vehicles safety on the roads, with a focus on further perfecting DeepRoute’s early sensor fusion perception technology, known as Early Fusion. This technology assists with more accurate interpretations of the vehicle’s surroundings. 

DeepRoute

The California Autonomous Vehicle Testing Regulations require every manufacturer authorized to test autonomous vehicles on public roads to submit an annual report summarizing the disengagements of the technology during testing. This disengagement report is due Jan. 1 each year. The first report covers the period from when the permit was issued to Nov. 30 of the following year. Subsequent reports provide details from Dec. 1 to Nov. 30.

The DMV introduced a new Annual Report of Autonomous Vehicle Disengagement (OL 311R) (PDF) form to help standardize the reporting method. All active permit holders that received authorization prior to 2018 were required to submit a disengagement report by Jan. 1, 2019. Manufacturers permitted in 2018 will submit their first report by Jan. 1, 2020.

Another area of test focus will be the company’s planning algorithm, which is able to safely and accurately plan the time to turn, select the lane, make decisions at crossroads, and achieve other driving behaviors more efficiently.

In their ongoing effort to establish global vehicle autonomy, the company is also partnered with a Chinese Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) to provide robo-taxi services during an international sporting event in October, in addition to cooperating with a Chinese ride-hailing company with an initial 100 vehicles for their test fleet. 

DeepRoute joins 63 other active ATV permit holders in California, including high-profile contenders such as Tesla Motors, Volkswagen Group of America, Mercedes Benz, Waymo, BMW, Honda, Nissan, Ford, Bosch and Lyft. The growing body of companies testing self-driving technology shows progress towards a future where vehicles are fully autonomous. For now, per ATV requirements, all self-driving vehicle tests must be conducted by trained safety operators.

DeepRoute is committed to delivering safe, intelligent and reliable self-driving vehicles to all. By securing an ATV permit and US$50 million in its pre-Series A funding round, DeepRoute anticipates doubling its Silicon Valley, California office with new talent by the end of 2019 to expand the company’s autonomous driving solutions globally. DeepRoute’s global expansion also includes a fleet of robotaxis headed to Japan in the coming years in collaboration with a global supplier.

“This is an exciting step in our team’s progress to obtaining a fully autonomous fleet of vehicles in California,” said Shuang Gao, chief operating officer of DeepRoute. “Over the coming months, our fleet is expected to grow and allow our teams to further perfect our technologies and reinforce the safety of autonomous vehicles.”


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