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Public Self-Driving Shuttle Launched in Las Vegas

AAA and Keolis launch nation’s first public self-driving shuttle in downtown Las Vegas.

AAA and Keolis launch nation’s first public self-driving shuttle in downtown Las Vegas.

American Automobile Association (AAA), in partnership with Keolis, is sponsoring a self-driving shuttle pilot project geared specifically for the public.

According to AAA Northern California, Nevada & Utah, over the course of a year, the self-driving shuttle aims to provide a quarter-million residents and visitors of Las Vegas with first-hand experience using autonomous vehicle (AV) technology. This pilot builds on Keolis’ limited shuttle launch in downtown Las Vegas in early 2017.

In addition to studying how the shuttle interacts in a live traffic environment in downtown Las Vegas’ busy Innovation District, AAA will survey riders on their experience in order to understand why a large percentage of consumers remain wary of driverless technology, and whether a personal experience changes their perception.

AAA partnered with the city of Las Vegas, the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTC) and Keolis North America (Keolis), which will operate and maintain the NAVYA Arma fully electric shuttle.

Tim Condon, President & CEO of AAA Northern California, Nevada & Utah, said autonomous-vehicle technology is poised to bring unprecedented mobility independence to Americans, in addition to improving traffic safety.

The shuttle is manufactured by NAVYA, comes equipped with LiDAR technology, GPS, cameras, and will seat eight passengers with seatbelts. Safety features include the ability to automatically and immediately brake in the event of a pedestrian crossing in the path of the vehicle.

In addition to surveying the shuttle’s riders, AAA will examine how others sharing the streets react to it — including pedestrians and cyclists. AAA chose Las Vegas for the launch because of the state’s progressive regulations on autonomous vehicles, heavy investment in innovation, the high volume of visitors and a sunny, dry climate that’s favorable for testing new driving technology.

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