General Motors is asking the federal government to allow the carmaker to launch a self-driving vehicle without a steering wheel next year.
GM has filed a Safety Petition with the Department of Transportation for its fourth-generation self-driving Cruise AV to drive with no steering wheel, pedals, manual controls or driver.
The electric Cruise AV is designed to operate on its own and is planned to be on the road by next year.
The Cruise AV has sensors that provide a 360-degree view and can identify pedestrians in a crosswalk or an object darting into its path, according to the company.
GM said its vehicle is designed to safely operate among aggressive drivers, bicyclists, unprotected left turns, jaywalkers, delivery trucks and four-way stop signs. It developed the vehicle in San Francisco.
The vehicle has five LiDARs (light detection and ranging), 16 cameras and 21 radars to see complex environments.
The car has a crash-imminent braking system calibrated to work as a backup to the self-driving system, which can brake to stop the car if needed, according to a safety report by GM.
The self-driving vehicles are intended to drive only in geo-fenced boundaries on roads where a high-definition map data was created.
The idea is that potential ridders would use a mobile app to request a ride, much like they use ride-sharing services like Uber or Lyft.