The Henry Ford acquires GM's first self-driving test vehicle

Posted at 9:22 AM, Mar 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-12 12:55:38-04

DEARBORN, Mich. (WXYZ) — The Henry Ford Museum announced on Tuesday that it has acquired General Motors' first-generation self-driving test vehicles. The vehicle debuted on the streets of San Francisco in 2016 and was part of a siginificant step in the development of self-driving technology.

The vehicle was one of GM's first to operate on the streets autonomously and is also the first self-driving vehicle to be added to the museum's collection.

“Self-driving capabilities will fundamentally change our relationship with the automobile,” said Patricia Mooradian, president and CEO, The Henry Ford. “As the home of the historic vehicles that have shaped that relationship today, this acquisition is paramount in how we tell that story in the future.”

It's a modified pre-production Chevy Bolt EV and was developed in collaboration with Cruise Automation, which was acquired by GM in 2016. It includes cameras, radar and LIDAR sensors and an on-board computer.

“Autonomous vehicles will change people’s lives forever, just as the automobile itself did more than a hundred years ago,” said Mark Reuss, president of General Motors. “The Henry Ford is a treasured institution where past and present innovations are documented and displayed, and GM is proud to provide our autonomous test vehicle to serve as an inspiration to the innovators of tomorrow.”

The vehicle is now on display at the museum next to the 1959 Cadillac El Dorado near the netrace of the Driving America exhibit.