Published: January 2018
Levels of Autonomy
Circulated: July 27, 2020
To help automotive engineers, governments, and insurers get a better handle on this new technology, the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) defined the five levels of automobile autonomy.
Level 0: Not autonomy; the driver performs all driving tasks.
Level 1: A single function automated. e.g., cruise control
Level 2: Acceleration and steering are automated. The driver must remain engaged and monitor the vehicle at all times. e.g., automated lane centering and collision-avoidance braking
Level 3: All safety functions are automated, but the driver may need to take over in an emergency; e.g., Tesla’s autopilot feature.
Level 4: The vehicle performs all driving functions under certain conditions; e.g., dry, warm weather. Human input optional.
Level 5: The vehicle is capable of performing all driving functions under all conditions. No human required.