The six official levels of autonomous vehicles explained

Self-driving cars can mean a number of different things, so the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration adopted a zero-to-5 scale of the types of automation created by SAE International, with level zero being non-autonomous. Generally:

• At SAE Level 0, the human driver does everything;
• At SAE Level 1, an automated system on the vehicle can sometimes assist the human driver conduct some parts of the driving task;
• At SAE Level 2, an automated system on the vehicle can actually conduct some parts of the driving task, while the human continues to monitor the driving environment and performs the rest of the driving task;
• At SAE Level 3, an automated system can both actually conduct some parts of the driving task and monitor the driving environment in some instances, but the human driver must be ready to take back control when the automated system requests;
• At SAE Level 4, an automated system can conduct the driving task and monitor the driving environment, and the human need not take back control, but the automated system can operate only in certain environments and under certain conditions; and
• At SAE Level 5, the automated system can perform all driving tasks, under all conditions that a human driver could perform them.

Self Driving Cars - Understanding the Six Automation Levels (YouTube / Nicholas Puschak)

Notable Replies

  1. At level 6 the vehicle does not need humans, and can decide for itself where to go and what to do...
    At Level 7 the vehicle has feelings and can be upset or angry if mistreated...

  2. 0-5 is six levels. It's the zero that throws people off.

  3. At SAE level 6, the automated system picks the music, human shuts its cakehole.

  4. I actually almost ended the post with "In B4 someone says six." As I see it, the zeroth level is not autonomous, so is not a level of autonomy. It's like saying there are six levels of DEFCON.
    And yes, zeroth is the ordinal of zero.

  5. Don't call me a civilian, call me a "Zero-star General."

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