UK trade body sets out guidance for marketing AVs

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The UK’s automotive industry has committed to a new set of guiding principles for marketing automated vehicles, published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

Developed and agreed by the country’s Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles’ AV-DRiVE Group, the principles provide an outline for responsible advertising and communication relating to automated vehicles and their capabilities. It is hoped that the industry-led initiative will ensure consumers receive consistent and clear information regarding automated driving features, ahead of their expected introduction on British roads in 2022.

The guiding principles state that:

  • An automated driving feature must be described sufficiently clearly so as not to mislead, including setting out the circumstances in which that feature can function.
  • An automated driving feature must be described sufficiently clearly so that it is distinguished from an assisted driving feature.
  • Where both automated driving and assisted driving features are described, they must be clearly distinguished from each other.
  • An assisted driving feature should not be described in a way that could convey the impression that it is an automated driving feature.
  • The name of an automated or assisted driving feature must not mislead by conveying that it is the other – ancillary words may be necessary to avoid confusion – for example for an assisted driving feature, by making it clear that the driver must be in control at all times.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, commented, “The UK is at the forefront of the introduction of automated vehicles, which has tremendous potential to save lives, improve mobility for all and drive economic growth. It is essential that this revolutionary technology is marketed accurately and responsibly, and we are delighted to have brought together industry, government and other key stakeholders to develop a series of guiding principles that will ensure consumers will have clarity and confidence over their capabilities from when these advanced vehicles first make their way into showrooms.”

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Lawrence has been covering engineering subjects – with a focus on motorsport technology – since 2007 and has edited and contributed to a variety of international titles. Currently, he is responsible for content across UKI Media & Events' portfolio of websites while also writing for the company's print titles.

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