The California Department of Motor Vehicles has allowed Baidu’s permission to test its autonomous driverless vehicles. He had the power to test his vehicles in California since 2016, but so far he could only do so with a standby driver. This development means it can now perform full driverless road tests using Lincoln MKZ and Chrysler Pacifica vehicles with its autonomous driving technology in Sunnyvale, Santa Clara County.
This makes Baidu the sixth company to obtain a license for driverless test drives in the state, joining the likes of Alphabet. Waymo, GM Cruise and Nuro. To get the permit, the company had to prove to the California DMV that its technology is capable of Level 4 or 5 range. It also had to write detailed instructions on how law enforcement and early Responders should interact with their test vehicles in the event of an accident or emergency. The Chinese tech giant will be allowed to conduct driverless tests on public roads at any time of the day and night, except in thick fog or heavy rain.