American automotive stalwart General Motors has topped a list of companies competing to bring fully autonomous technologies to market.
A report tabled by analyst firm Navigant Research puts GM at the head of list of tech firms, car companies, and joint ventures between the two, based on the company's ability to bring driverless vehicles to market.
The Navigant Research Leaderboard for Automated Driving Vehicles ranked Google’s Waymo in second place and Mercedes-Benz parent company, Daimler in third spot based on their preparations to introduce self-driving cars.
General Motors’ rise to the top of the list follows its move to ask the US Department of Transportation to put self-driving cars on the road in 2019.
A statement published by GM in January said the Cruise AV (top of page) will be “the first production-ready vehicle built from the start to operate safely on its own, with no driver, steering wheel, pedals or manual controls”.
Navigant Research’s analysis ranks autonomous tech standings according to “which participants are best equipped to be the leaders in developing complete automated driving stacks - including perception systems, processing, and control software - and services platforms”.
Assessment is formed following a review of a number of key areas including vision, go-to-market strategy, partners, production capacity, product quality and reliability, product portfolio and staying power.
Those factors enable companies like GM and Daimler, with existing retail channels and proven manufacturing backgrounds, to pull ahead on the leaderboard.
While Tesla arguably already offers some of the most advanced driver assistance systems currently available, its struggles with production capacity, profitability and technical partnerships push its ranking down to a surprisingly low 19th position.
The report’s authors say that although Tesla is “perceived by many mainstream observers as a leader in automated driving”, it faces serious challenges in the future.
“While Tesla has been aggressive in promoting Autopilot, since ending its relationship with Mobileye, the company has struggled to reach the same level of functionality with its in-house developed system,” it says.
The Navigant Research Automated Driving Vehicles leaderboard:
- General Motors
- Waymo (Google)
- Volkswagen Group
- Aptiv (UK-based mobility specialist)
- BMW-Intel-Fiat Chrysler Automobiles
- Renault Nissan Mitsubishi Alliance
- Groupe PSA (Peugeot, Citroen, DS and Opel)
- Jaguar Land Rover
- Navya (French shuttles)
- Baidu – BAIC (a collaboration between Chinese tech and automotive firms)
- Hyundai Motor Group (including Kia)
Source: Navigant Research