Apple Doubles Autonomous-Car Test Fleet in California

May 16, 2018 at 11:11 AM

Apple Inc. has expanded its self-driving car test program in California to 55 vehicles and 83 drivers.

The tech giant received permission to test such vehicles—with a backup driver onboard—from California’s Dept. of Motor Vehicles in April 2017. Apple started with a trio of Lexus RX450h hybrid crossovers last year and added 24 more through January.

The latest additions give Apple the second-largest autonomous test fleet in California. General Motors and its Cruise Automation unit lead the way with 104 vehicles and 407 drivers, according to the DMV.

Google’s Waymo arm ranks third with 51 vehicles and 338 drivers, followed by Tesla (39 cars and 92 drivers), Drive.AI (14 and 10), Zoox (12, 71) Nio (11, 19) and Toyota (11, 16). In total there are about 400 self-driving cars and 1,600 backup drivers registered in the state.