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January 11, 2023
Israeli self-driving tech company Mobileye has received the greenlight to roll out its autonomous cars across Germany.
The approval came via the TÜV SÜD organization, an independent body tasked with monitoring, certifying and licensing vehicles, and will pave the way for Mobileye to expand its pilot phase in Germany and operate Mobileye Drive-equipped NIO ES8 SUVs on all roads in the country, as long as a safety driver is present. Mobileye has been permitted to test AVs in Germany since 2020.
Mobileye Drive is the most advanced version of the Jerusalem-based company’s autonomous tech yet and comprises a 360-degree suite of sensors including 13 cameras, six surround radars, three long-range Lidars and six short-range lidars, powered by the company’s own EyeQ chip.
It also features what the company calls True Redundancy to enhance safety. Under this approach, the camera subsystem operates independently of the radar/Lidar subsystem, essentially allowing each subsystem to act as a backup for the other.
To date in Germany, the company has been operating limited Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) pilots with partners in Munich and Darmstadt, but the TÜV SÜD decision will allow it to step up its plans. Specifically, it is hoping to use the ES8s for robotaxi operations. It is also keen to integrate on-demand shuttles into local public transport.
The approval comes as Germany enables the required regulatory processes for driverless vehicles after legislation was passed approving them in 2021.
“We are thankful for TÜV SÜD’s trusted support in expanding our autonomous vehicle technology testing in Germany,” said Johann Jungwirth, senior vice president of autonomous vehicles at Mobileye. “This allows us to show our capabilities to consumers, automakers and transportation agencies.”
To receive the TÜV SÜD approval recommendation, Mobileye had to provide comprehensive technical documentation as well as undergo various safety tests with the robotaxi.
Meanwhile, at CES, the company has been talking bullishly about its future plans, claiming a revenue pipeline of advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) business alone of more than $17 billion by 2030.
“In the short time since we went public in October, Mobileye’s business has accelerated substantially,” said founder and CEO Professor Amnon Shashua. “We’ve seen strong positive response from our existing customers and new automakers as well who believe in our vision for building cloud-connected, AI-driven driver assist and autonomous technology that can scale globally and provide meaningful benefits to millions of drivers worldwide.”
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