Currently reading: UK to develop 'world-leading' safety standard for autonomous cars
Government hopes new standards, revealed at the opening of a new self-driving test site, will be adopted worldwide

The UK Government is developing a new safety standard for self-driving vehicles on British roads, as part of a push to make the country a world leader in autonomous technology.

The new regime, called CAV PASS, is being developed by “world-leading” experts in vehicle safety and cyber security from the Government, industry and the academic world. It's intended to ensure that self-driving vehicles “are safe and secure by design and minimise any defects ahead of their testing, sale and wider deployment on UK roads.”

The new standards will build on existing guidelines that were first established by the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) in 2015.

The scheme, which the Government hopes will become the basis for a global standard, was announced by George Freeman, the future of mobility minister, at the Cenex Low Carbon Vehicle conference.

At that event, Freeman also opened the Autonomous Village, a new self-driving test facility at Millbrook Proving Ground that features 43 miles of test track. 

The facility is the first in a planned network of autonomous vehicle testing facilities that will also allow developers to test software, 5G connectivity and cyber security systems.

“Self-driving vehicles can offer significant rewards for the UK’s economy, road safety and accessibility,” said Freeman. “We are determined to lead in the testing and development of safe autonomous transport.

“This is new terrain, and with our national expertise, the UK is well placed to blaze the trail globally by developing a global benchmark for assuring the safety and security of this exciting technology.”

Read more

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James Attwood

James Attwood, digital editor
Title: Acting magazine editor

James is Autocar's acting magazine editor. Having served in that role since June 2023, he is in charge of the day-to-day running of the world's oldest car magazine, and regularly interviews some of the biggest names in the industry to secure news and features, such as his world exclusive look into production of Volkswagen currywurst. Really.

Before first joining Autocar in 2017, James spent more than a decade in motorsport journalist, working on Autosport,, F1 Racing and Motorsport News, covering everything from club rallying to top-level international events. He also spent 18 months running Move Electric, Haymarket's e-mobility title, where he developed knowledge of the e-bike and e-scooter markets. 

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Peter Cavellini 4 September 2019


 Yeah,this in the future might be as close to Car manufacturing if Boris and Co fck up our bumbling along the bottom economy, I’m talking about just affordability, most, I know there are some who this won’t affect, won’t be able to buy a Car, so, being a World leader is, will be as good as it gets!