The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) J3016 standard has defined six levels of automation ranging from level zero (no control automation, only warnings, e.g. lane departure warning systems) to level five automation (fully automated vehicles under all conditions). Currently no production level four or five vehicles exist yet, but automakers have begun to offer active driving systems at level two automation in some newer model year vehicles.
However, despite their increasingly commercial availability, some safety advocates and others have raised concerns about the reliability of these level two active driving systems for two main reasons. First, drivers are supposed to remain fully attentive and in control of the vehicles even when the automation systems are engaged. Yet, these systems might lull drivers into a false sense of security and cause drivers to become inattentive. Second, the actual efficacy of level two automation systems under real world driving conditions is not entirely clear. Real world driving conditions may present these systems with substantial challenges such as faded lane markings, challenging traffic conditions, stopped vehicles and other situations that could cause these systems to fail.
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