Friday, March 22, 2024

Looking at Nine-Year Trends of California Autonomous Vehicle Testing

I'm thinking there is some monetizable information in the raw data.

From the electrical engineers at EE Times, March 13:

The California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) released its 2023 data in early February—its ninth year of data. It’s the pioneer in testing autonomous vehicles (AVs), which began in 2015. The 2023 figures include data from 23 companies. This column includes statistics and trends, with perspectives for nine years of results. Waymo and Cruise were again the leaders in AV testing in California.

The DMV’s data is limited, but the results are the primary public data available to assess how various AV companies are doing. The results by AV testing companies include the following information:

  • Company name of all participants;
  • Monthly data from December 2022 through November 2023;
  • Number of AV permits and how many AVs were used;
  • Monthly AV miles traveled for each AV and yearly total;
  • Disengagement data for all AVs by date, company, vehicle ID and other information.

Author’s note: From 2015 to 2020, all AVs operated with safety drivers and are labeled “drivered.” In 2021, driverless testing started. In this case, disengagements occurred only with hardware and software issues. Few driverless AV disengagements were reported.

2015–2023 trend: Waymo and Cruise dominate
During 2023, 38 companies had permits to test AVs in California, though not all companies used their AV permits. The 2023 data includes 23 companies, with one first-time AV company: Vueron. Over 70 companies have participated in AV testing since 2015. Only seven companies have received permits for driverless testing.

The next figure is a summary of drivered, driverless and total AV miles by year in three bar charts. AV testing with safety driver (drivered) grew from 451,000 miles in 2015 to over 5.85 million miles in 2023. The cumulative drivered AV miles add up to over 23.5 million miles in nine years.

Figure 1: California AV testing miles from 2015 to 2023. (Source: Egil Juliussen)

Driverless AV miles started slowly in 2021 with only 25,000 miles, and grew dramatically in 2022 to 602,000 miles. The driverless growth continued in 2023, with nearly 3.3 million miles. Cumulative driverless AV miles reached nearly 3.9 million in 2023.

Total AV miles, including both drivered and driverless, was 4.1 million in 2021, which more than doubled in 2023 to 9.1 million miles. Total cumulative AV miles grew from 8.5 million in 2020 to over 27.4 million in 2023. It’s likely that total AV miles will reach 10 to 12 million miles in 2024, depending on if or when Cruise gets its driverless permit that it lost in late 2023....