Two Apple Self-Driving Cars Involved in Rear-End Collisions While in Manual Mode, Marking First Minor Incidents in Two Years

Two of Apple's self-driving cars operating in manual mode were involved in minor collisions in August, according to the California DMV.

applelexusselfdriving1
The first incident [PDF] occurred in San Diego, California in the Hillcrest area on August 19. The Lexus RX 450h was stopped in traffic and was hit by a Hyundai. The accident was described as minor with no injuries.

The second accident [PDF] occurred on August 23 in Cupertino, California, right near the Apple Park campus. The vehicle with Apple's self-driving equipment was in manual mode and it was stopped in traffic when it was rear ended by a Subaru Outback.

Both of these incidents were not the fault of the self-driving vehicle or the person operating the vehicle, and are largely not notable. What is interesting, though, is that Apple vehicles were involved in two collisions in the same month after no accidents since September 2019.

Earlier this year, the California DMV's disengagement and mileage reports suggested that Apple's Lexus SUVs with self-driving software traversed more than 18,000 miles in 2020, a steep increase compared to prior years. It's possible that Apple has ramped up its testing in 2021, leading to a higher number of incidents.

Apple has been testing its self-driving software since early 2017, using the aforementioned Lexus RX 450h vehicles outfitted with sensors and cameras. The work on autonomous driving is part of Apple's longtime car project, and rumors suggest Apple is planning to release a vehicle in the mid to late 2020s.

Top Rated Comments

joeshmo2010 Avatar
34 months ago
Alternative headline: two vehicles owned by Apple were struck while stopped.

aka this is nothing but a clickbait headline.
Score: 95 Votes (Like | Disagree)
zakarhino Avatar
34 months ago
"operating in manual mode" aka someone was driving it, it was not self driving

Maybe you should highlight that part in the article's headline.
Score: 40 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sdf Avatar
34 months ago

Should have evaded the crash like Tesla do.
Teslas evade accidents when fully stopped and in manual drive? That's impressive!
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
I7guy Avatar
34 months ago
The collisions were not "at fault" of the operator. Maybe headline should reflect that.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
840quadra Avatar
34 months ago
Clearly not immune to getting hit by other cars when stopped stationary in Manual mode. Would the car have vertical take-off in Automated mode to avoid these crashes?
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
markfc Avatar
34 months ago
What an awful story!
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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