The AV industry sends an SOS to Pete Buttigieg

The autonomous vehicle industry is in trouble and is looking for help from an unlikely source: US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.

A coalition of lobbying groups sent Buttigieg a letter last week imploring him to support AV development or risk being outpaced by China. The subtext, of course, is the crisis facing GM subsidiary Cruise, which grounded its fleet recently in the aftermath of a crash involving one of its driverless cars.

The letter makes no mention of the situation with Cruise, instead focusing on the looming threat of competition from China. Signatories include the Autonomous Vehicle Industry Association, which represents Cruise, Waymo, Zoox, Motional, and others, as well as the US Chamber of Commerce and the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, which lobbies for the auto industry.

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