• NATALIA SOUSA

Motional Enlists TÜV SÜD as Part of the Safety Evaluation of its IONIQ 5 Robotaxi

Updated: Apr 13

Motional has announced its intent to work with TÜV SÜD, on the safety evaluation process of its next-generation robotaxi, the all-electric IONIQ 5-based robotaxi. In preparation for commercial deployments of the IONIQ 5 robotaxis, Motional is undergoing a multi-year safety evaluation process to demonstrate that the vehicle, including its driverless systems and supporting technology, is safe for fully driverless operation on public roads. Motional has enlisted TÜV SÜD to be part of the process.


Motional will leverage TÜV SÜD’s expertise in assessing safety architectures, functional safety, and cybersecurity throughout the engagement. In addition, TÜV SÜD’s teams will work closely with Motional’s engineers to review their processes, system designs, and analytical data. This level of the independent review will put Motional’s safety standards under an even higher degree of scrutiny and transparency than the company’s already rigorous practices and ultimately support Motional’s mission to improve road safety globally.

“The safety of our passengers and other road users is at the core of our technology development,” said Dean Degazio, Head of Safety at Motional. “By choosing to work with TÜV SÜD on the IONIQ 5 robotaxi evaluation, we’re going above and beyond industry norms and setting a new standard on AV safety.“

“At TÜV SÜD we strive to inspire trust in new mobility technologies through our holistic safety evaluations. This will be important in the journey towards safe deployment of highly automated vehicles like the IONIQ 5 robotaxi from Motional,” said Bijoy Bhaskaran, Head of Highly Automated Driving at TÜV SÜD North America.

In 2020, Motional became the first AV company to earn an endorsement from TÜV SÜD to operate its vehicles with an empty driver’s seat within its operational design domain (ODD). During an 18-month engagement, TUV SUD’s experts reviewed detailed safety architecture designs, analyzed testing processes results, scrutinized training procedures, and reviewed the qualifications and skill of the team. The resulting endorsement is a testament to the sophistication of Motional’s technology and safety processes.


Fully driverless ride-hail service starting in 2023

Starting in 2023, Motional will begin moving passengers in the IONIQ 5 robotaxis through its first fully driverless ride-hail service. The service is launching in partnership with Lyft and will start in Las Vegas and then expand to other cities.

While the service launching in 2023 will be fully driverless, Motional will still have humans in the loop through its Remote Vehicle Assistance (RVA) technology. For example, suppose a vehicle encounters an unusual scenario, such as construction or a disabled traffic signal. In that case, a remote operator will instantly connect to the vehicle and provide assistance, such as directing it to a new path. By having RVA capabilities, Motional can deploy its vehicles more broadly.

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