Today we have learned that Apple has increased its number of self-driving cars and decreased the number of drivers licensed to drive those cars by almost half. This is the first increase to their autonomous car fleet since August 2019. At that time, we reported that Apple was operating 66 vehicles. The number of Apple’s self-driving cars then remained the same (66 vehicles) since. According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, as of today, Apple has 68 cars.
Apple’s self-driving cars reached a peak of 72 cars in November 2018.
Another interesting thing is that the last time we reported on this in October of 2020, Apple had 154 drivers. Also, there had been no change since then in terms of the number of drivers, as we closely monitor the numbers. For the first time, Apple has drastically cut its number of drivers by more than half. Now, according to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, Apple has 76 drivers for its autonomous fleet.
Apple’s original registration for autonomous vehicles included only three cars. As we have reported before, Apple gradually grew its fleet from 3 to 45 between April 2017 and March 2018. By May 2018 they had increased the number to 55, then increased again to 62 at the end of May 2018. The fleet size was 66 in July 2018 and it had increased to 70 in September 2018. In November 2018, Apple had 72 autonomous vehicles. Then Apple started to decrease the numbers. In April 2019, Apple had 69 cars, and by August of 2019, Apple had 66 cars.
It is not clear why Apple increased the size of its fleet, while at the same time, decreasing its number of drivers. Here are the latest numbers:
- Waymo: 365/871
- Apple: 68/76
We also learned that Apple has not applied for a driverless testing permit. But there are other companies that have driverless fleets. Here are the driverless fleet volumes:
- WAYMO LLC: 34
- NURO, INC: 7
- AUTOX TECHNOLOGIES INC: 1
- ZOOX, INC: 2
- CRUISE LLC: 5
- BAIDU USA LLC: 3
- WERIDE CORP: 2