Autonomous vehicles may be operating in Knox County sooner than expected. On Tuesday, Knox County Mayor, Glenn Jacobs, met with leadership from Local Motors to take a meaningful step in the testing and deployment of autonomous vehicles.
The meeting granted Local Motors a vehicle tag allowing the shared, autonomous, electric vehicle, Olli, to operate on Valley Vista Road in Knox County for testing purposes. This makes Olli the first autonomous vehicle to operate on public roads in Knox County and allows the autonomous system to learn in mixed-traffic settings under the supervision of a certified safety attendant. Along with rigorous closed-course and simulation-based testing, real-world environments such as public roads contribute data that can be used to improve the safety and performance of Olli.
Mayor Jacobs said, “Local Motors is one of the companies helping solidify Knox County’s position as an innovation hub. Autonomous vehicles are the future. We are thrilled that Knox County is at the forefront of witnessing and helping this type of innovation move forward.”
“We’re excited to work closely with the Mayor to advance the development and deployment of autonomous vehicles in Knox County. Local Motors has been operating in Knox County for almost six years, and we look forward to expanding our presence as we continue to grow,” said Vikrant Aggarwal, Local Motors’ President.
In 2021, Local Motors has been adding features to Olli 2.0 and working closely with user groups and customers to generate value for passengers and customers alike. The mileage in Knox County will add to the thousands of miles Olli has already traveled autonomously.
About Local Motors
Local Motors is a ground mobility company focused on empowering communities through innovative and locally-relevant vehicles. Founded in 2007 with a belief in open collaboration, Local Motors began low volume vehicle manufacturing of open-source designs using multiple microfactories. Since its inception, Local Motors has debuted no less than three world firsts; the world’s first co-created vehicle, the world’s first 3D-printed car, and the world’s first co-created, autonomous, electric vehicle, Olli. We believe that Olli is the answer to a sustainable, accessible mobility solution for all.