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Inside Automotive (Mar 8th, 2017)

According to a survey conducted by AAA, 78% of respondents said they are afraid to ride in a fully-autonomous vehicle. Despite this fear, 59% of those surveyed said they want autonomous technology in their next vehicle. Although government and safety experts have said that autonomous technology has the ability to prevent up to 80% of today’s crashes, the survey found that 54% of drivers would feel less safe sharing the road with a self-driving car. — DETROIT FREE PRESS

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Volkswagen showed off its Sedric self-driving concept car at the Geneva Auto Show. The Sedric has no pedals or steering wheel, seats four and can be summoned with the push of a button. Although the vehicle won’t hit roads anytime soon, the German automaker has committed billions of dollars to autonomous vehicle development and research. "Many elements and functions of this concept car will reappear in vehicles from our brands in the coming years," said CEO Mattias Müller in a statement. — FORTUNE

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Toyota’s artificial intelligence research institute showed its first self-driving car this week. Toyota has equipped a Lexus LS 600hL with LIDAR, radar, and camera arrays to enable self-driving. This also means the vehicle can drive autonomously without relying too heavily on high-definition maps. The purpose of the institute is to develop Level 4 self-driving, where the vehicle is restricted to certain geographical areas, and Level 5 autonomy, where the vehicle can work anywhere. The research is a part of Toyota’s billion-dollar investment in self-driving technology. — THE VERGE

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Lawmakers in Massachusetts are proposing a per-mile tax on self-driving vehicles, along with other legislation. The bill is meant to curtail the rise of "zombie cars,” or driverless vehicles that drive in circles waiting for a customer instead of parking. The legislation also requires autonomous cars to be properly labeled as autonomous on the exterior, be zero-emission vehicles if they weigh less than 8,500 pounds, store data required by the Massachusetts DMV and have a panic button. — BI

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