Late last week, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed groundbreaking new statewide legislation governing the use, testing, and sale of self-driving vehicles.
Without the new regulations, only permitted, manufacturer-owned vehicles would be allowed to drive on public roads. But now, autonomous cars can undergo road testing without needing a brake pedal, steering wheel, or human rider in the front seat. The self-driving cars can also be used for ridesharing fleets and, when they’re ready, be sold to the public.
The birthplace of America’s automotive industry, Michigan supported the new rules in part to solidify its role as a hub of innovation, and also to provide a tech-friendly model for future national regulation.
“Michigan put the world on wheels and now we are leading the way in transforming the auto industry,” said Governor Snyder in a statement. “We are becoming the mobility industry, shaped around technology that makes us more aware and safer as we’re driving. By recognizing that and aligning our state’s policies as new technology is developed, we will continue as the leader the rest of the world sees as its biggest competition.”