Self-driving cars are thaaat much closer to being a real, regular thing

Self-driving cars are already real. Uber is testing self-driving cars in Pennsylvania, and even the non-transportation company Apple is making space to test self-driving cars in the Bay Area. Oh, and self-driving taxis are already on the road in Singapore.

Now, Michigan just became the first U.S. state to put comprehensive self-driving car regulations in its legislation, making self-driving cars an official legal reality.

It’s not surprising that Michigan would be ahead of the curve when it comes to cars. Sure, the Bay Area may be home to Silicon Valley, while Pittsburgh (where Uber is testing its self-driving fleet) is home to Carnegie Mellon University. But Detroit is synonymous with the American car industry, and that’s an important part of the Michigan legislation.

Despite seemingly allowing for the self-driving car industry to flourish, Michigan’s laws actually make it legal for traditional car manufacturers to test and implement self-driving cars on public roads. For outside companies like Uber and Apple, this could be a problem — which is why even though the law appears to be in their favor, they’re challenging it.

Other U.S. states aren’t too far behind when it comes to self-driving car legislation; Florida, California, Nevada, Tennessee, Washington, D.C., and Arizona all at least allow for the testing of self-driving cars. Michigan’s set a new car frontier, bringing us that much closer to a driverless future.