Autonomous vehicles are alive and well, and now crossing borders. While many states have yet to authorize the testing of autonomous vehicles, a demonstration took place Monday between Michigan and Southern Ontario.
The test drive began in Detroit and continue into Windsor and Sarnia, Ontario, before returning to Traverse City, MI, where Ontario and Michigan signed a formal agreement to collaborate on testing, developing and marketing automated and connected vehicle technology.
Ontario’s Magna International and Michigan’s Continental Automotive North America provided the demonstration vehicles, which were a 2015 Cadillac ATS and Chrysler 300. The test was also designed to showcase the automotive expertise of the two areas. Combined, Ontario and Michigan produce 26% of all North American vehicles and total automotive trade between the countries was $46 billion in 2016.
“The blueprint for border testing is being developed right here in Michigan and Ontario. We value our relationship with Ontario and look forward to further collaboration as this technology continues to evolve, said Kirk T. Steudle, Michigan State Transportation Director.
Did you know?
The federal electronic stability control law went into effect on Monday. (Click to read more on the law). NHTSA estimate the law will save up to 49 lives, prevent up to 1,759 crashes each year, and provide net economic benefits of more than $300 million annually.
“[Monday’s] demonstration is an important example of how our ongoing cross-border cooperation is advancing connected and autonomous vehicle technologies. Our government is committed to creating new good middle-class jobs, growth and long-term prosperity that will position Canada as a global center for automotive innovation. By continuing to work with the United States, we will equip our citizens with the skills they need to design and build the cars of the future on both sides of the border.”
– Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, Canada, on a successful cross-border autonomous vehicle test.
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The news that Michigan and Ontario successfully completed an autonomous vehicle cross-border test on Monday is a great display of cooperation between the neighbors, but it begs one question: Whose passport did it use to cross the border?
Hammer down everyone!