Getty Images / Bill Pugliano

Tougher Safety Ratings Could Put Autonomous Cars In The Fast Lane

The government has proposed changes to its safety ratings system that could force manufacturers to add more autonomous safety features.

By Leah Becerra | December 10, 2015

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is going to be tweaking its safety ratings system, which will likely make it harder for cars (at least, as they're currently designed) to get top marks. (Video via National Highway Traffic Safety Administration)

This is actually a good thing for car buyers because the suggested changes mean the cars we buy in the future will be safer and possibly more autonomous.

Just think about it: Cars have gotten faster, both bigger and smaller, and recently they're even becoming more self-driven. 

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In an interview with Wired, the Secretary of Transportation said he'd told the administration to review the ratings, "Nudging and making it a little harder for folks to get a five star."

This way, auto manufacturers have some incentive to step up their safety game besides, y'know, just saving peoples' lives.

The proposed changes to the administration's safety ratings system include half-star ratings, a new crash test and more human-like dummies. Also, having more autonomous safety features baked in will likely lead to higher marks. (Video via National Highway Traffic Safety Administration)

Adding those "crash-avoidance advanced technologies" could also help pave the way to a self-driving future for autos. It's something we're all excited about and that a lot of tech companies have already committed to. (Video via Mercedes-Benz)

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