Uber's autonomous Ford Fusions are back in San Francisco, not driving autonomously

California booted Uber's autonomous vehicles from San Francisco just over one month ago. The test cars moved to Arizona, but now it seems the fleet will be back in San Francisco, this time under human control. Business Insider reports that the vehicles are returning, but will just be used to gather mapping data, not self-driving testing.

The bitter fight and ultimately failed experiment by Uber to test autonomous vehicles on San Francisco streets was nothing but a mess from the start. On the very first day of the test, there were multiple reports of Uber's vehicles ignoring red lights, stop signs, and bike lanes. When California asked Uber to cease testing, the ridesharing company defiantly continued on. Uber initially claimed that the incidents were the result of human error, but as reports racked up they became more and more difficult to just explain away. Eventually, the vehicles' California registration was revoked and the experiment was ended.

The Ford Fusions that will be back in California have had their self-driving systems deactivated. Uber worked with the state to regain registration for five vehicles under the condition that they will be used for mapping purposes. California said it was willing to reconsider autonomous testing if Uber was willing to secure the proper permits.

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