Apple has again increased the size of its autonomous vehicle (AV) test-driving team. In our last report in May, Apple had decreased the size of its team to 145 (down from 201 in March). This was the first time in two years Apple had decreased the size of its testing team, and it was a dramatic cut. According to the California DMV, Apple’s team now numbers 152. Meanwhile, Apple’s fleet size has remained steady since March at 66 test vehicles.
Other notable changes in California’s AV scene include the addition of another manufacturer licensed to deploy driverless vehicles, Mercedes. In June, Mercedes became only the fourth manufacturer licensed to have a driverless vehicle on the road. The other three, Nuro, Cruise and Waymo, have been licensed since 2021. Apple has still not applied for a driverless permit.
Here we list the size of the driving team and number of AV vehicles for some of the major manufacturers.
Fleet volumes from California DMV as of July 7, 2023
Waymo, Zoox and Cruise have upped their driverless fleet sizes a little since our last report: Waymo added 6, Zoom added 3, and Cruise has added 29 more vehicles. Apple has still not applied for a driverless permit as of July 7, 2023.
Driverless fleet volumes as of July 7, 2023
There is a new player on the field, however, in the area of driverless deployment. Mercedes is now, as of June 8, 2023, licensed to deploy its driverless vehicles in California.
Here are the manufacturers licensed to deploy driverless vehicles in California and the dates they were granted permits.
|Dec 23, 2020||NURO|
|Sep 30, 2021||CRUISE|
|Sep 30, 2021||WAYMO|
|June 8, 2023||MERC BENZ|
California requires even the most minor incidents involving autonomous vehicles be recorded. These incidents must be reported even if the vehicle was driving (or stopped at a stop sign) in manual mode (not autonomous) and no matter who (if anyone) was at fault.
Since April, Apple has had one more collision: On May 11, 2023, One of Apple’s Lexus test vehicles was rear-ended while stopped at a stop sign.
Some of the other manufacturers have added a few collisions:
- Waymo 10
- Cruise 14
- Zoom 3
- Mercedes 3
- Pony 1
- WeRide 2
Here are the total collision volumes for some of the major manufacturers.
Previous coverage of Apple’s autonomous vehicle program
- March 2023: Apple Increases Number of Test Drivers for Its Autonomous Fleet, Keeps Fleet Size Steady
- January 2023: Apple Adds More Drivers to Autonomous Vehicle Team; Decreases Fleet Size
- November 2022: Apple Has Added 51 More Drivers in 2022 While Fleet Size Remains Steady
- September 2022: Apple Adds More Drivers to its Autonomous Vehicle Program; Waymo, Cruise Make Huge Additions to Their Driverless Fleets
- June 2022: New Apple Autonomous Vehicle Data: 7 More Drivers for Apple’s Fleet
- March 2022: Apple Adds More Drivers to Its Autonomous Vehicle Program
Early autonomous vehicle coverage