Cruise CEO Kyle Vogt Resigns From Controversial Robotaxi Company
After an ongoing list of accidents, traffic holdups, pedestrian-related incidents, and malfunctions, Kyle Vogt, the CEO of the GM-owned robotaxi service Cruise announced that he has resigned from his position in the company.
Why Did Vogt Resign From Cruise?
In a press release, Cruise announced that Vogt, its CEO and co-founder voluntarily stepped down from his role in the company. Mo Elshenawy, the executive vice president of engineering of Cruise, will now be service as its new president and chief technology officer. Vogt confirmed his resignation via Twitter/X.
While Vogt didn’t reveal any specific reason for his resignation, he says he plans “to spend time with my family and explore some new ideas.”
Vogt also added some positive words of encouragement for the future of the company, saying, “Cruise is still just getting started, and I believe it has a great future ahead. The folks at Cruise are brilliant, driven, and resilient. They’re executing on a solid, multi-year roadmap and an exciting product vision. I’m thrilled to see what Cruise has in store next!”
What Is The Current Situation with Robotaxis?
Whether those words will carry any weight for the future of Cruise will remain to be seen, considering that the California Department of Motor Vehicles had suspended the company’s deployment and testing permits of its autonomous vehicles following an incident involving a pedestrian in San Francisco. There has also been some very harsh criticism from first responders, labor activists, and local elected officials over the very presence of these robotaxis.
“The California DMV today notified Cruise that the department is suspending Cruise’s autonomous vehicle deployment and driverless testing permits, effective immediately,” the California DMV said in its statement. “Based upon the performance of the vehicles, the Department determines the manufacturer’s vehicles are not safe for the public’s operation.”
The company has also received very harsh criticism after an October incident with a pedestrian resulted in her being knocked into the robotaxi’s path, driving over her and dragging her. Upon submitting video footage from the vehicle involved, authorities discovered that it was partially tampered with by the company.
“The video footage presented to the department ended with the AV (Autonomous Vehicle) initial stop following the hard-braking maneuver. Footage of the subsequent movement of the AV to perform a pullover maneuver was not shown to the department and Cruise did not disclose that any additional movement of the vehicle had occurred after the initial stop of the vehicle. The department only learned of the AV’s subsequent movement via discussion with another government agency.”
Whether Cruise, or robotaxi services in general, will have a future following the mishandling of these incidents remains to be seen.