Self-Driving Technology Continues to Improve Thanks to Aeva

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Self-driving cars are increasingly becoming part of our reality. A number of manufacturers already offer models that self-park, brake automatically to avoid accidents, and help drivers stay in their lane on the highway. The Tesla Model S can even manage most highway driving decisions without a driver.
Now, tech start-up Aeva Technologies, a company founded by former Apple engineers, has developed a self-driving sensor that can detect vehicles from 500 meters—double the distance of a Tesla.
The range of Aeva’s new sensor might make the transition to autonomous driving a more feasible reality, but it doesn’t remove all the barriers by any means. The cost of owning and insuring self-driving technology is already a concern for some.
So how much do self-driving vehicles cost? What effect will Aeva’s sensor have on your ability to access this new technology? And how will it affect the price of car insurance? To explore these questions, let’s take a look at what the company says about itself and the current state of car insurance for the technology we already have on the road.
A map pulled up on the dashboard of a car
Self-driving cars have been steadily improving for years | Twenty20

Who is Aeva?

Soroush Salehian and Mina Rezk, two ex-Apple engineers, founded Aeva four years ago. Since then, they’ve developed the world’s first 4D LiDar (Light Detection and ranging) chip, which powers Aeries, their sensor for self-driving vehicles.
Aeva has partnered with a number of companies to bring their product to the masses, from TuSimple, the autonomous freight trucking startup, to automotive suppliers Denso and ZF Friedrichshafen AG, and Volkswagon family-member Audi.

The cost of autonomous technology

While there is no news yet on when or how you’ll be able to buy Aeva’s sensor, many auto manufacturers are already offering semi-autonomous features in their vehicles. From Mazda to Maserati, nearly every company has included adaptive cruise control, self-parking, and/or lane-centering technology in their new models.
This technology has been adopted to varying degrees in every class of car. While the price of vehicles tend to go up the more autonomous features they have, even the 2020 Ford F-150 has adaptive cruise control down to a stop.
The industry hasn’t stopped there. New player Cruise is working with General Motors to develop self-driving ride-share programs, making self-driving transportation accessible to even more people. Advances like Aeva’s new sensor will make programs like this safer and more reliable.

Insuring self-driving vehicles

Because autonomous driving technology is constantly improving, its effect on the price of car insurance is also in a state of flux. The current conflict between Tesla and the insurance industry illustrates the current situation pretty well.
It’s not all bad news, it’s just a difficult balance to strike. Each development makes driving potentially safer which is always good news for your insurance bill. But new tech also comes with higher repair costs, which has the potential of raising insurance prices rather than lowering them.
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