The controversy over how to approach Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) continues as the California DMV is moving forward with a new regulation to ban the use of certain words in the promotion and advertising of the systems.
One of the words is ‘Autopilot’, which is exactly what Tesla has been calling its own ADAS since its announcement in October 2014.
Last week, the DMV published a draft of the new regulation, which is not official yet, but could quickly become a problem for Tesla and other automakers.
The summary of the rule states:
“Prohibits the advertisement of lower levels of automated systems, where the human driver is still responsible for monitoring or control of the vehicle, as “autonomous”, “self-driving” or other similar terms.”
“(b) Terms such as “self-driving”, “automated”, “auto-pilot”, or other statements made that are likely to induce a reasonably prudent person to believe a vehicle is autonomous, as defined, constitute an advertisement that the vehicle is autonomous for the purposes of this section and Vehicle Code section 11713.”
Tesla is reviewing the draft regulations and will provide input to the DMV as appropriate. Autopilot makes driving safer and less stressful, and we have always been clear that it does not make a car autonomous any more than its namesake makes an aircraft autonomous.
“While the autopilot relieves you from manually manipulating the flight controls, you must maintain vigilance over the system to ensure that it performs the intended functions and the aircraft remains within acceptable parameters of altitudes, airspeeds, and airspace limits.”