Testing on public roads

As a possibility for testing advanced automated vehicles/functions

Since the entry into force of AutomatFahrV in 2016, test runs with highly or fully automated vehicles may under certain conditions be performed on roads carrying public traffic by vehicle manufacturers, research institutes and the Ministry of Defence.

The 1st amendment to the Automated Driving Regulation (AutomatFahrV) of the BMK came into force in March 2019. A legal basis was created within the scope of the amendment to ensure that permitted driver assistance systems, specifically the parking aid and the motorway assistant, can be used on roads carrying public traffic in Austria without the driver always having to have a hand on the steering wheel. Furthermore, an acceleration of the procedure during test runs relating to the 2nd section on the secondary road network and an expansion of the scope of testing for self-propelled military vehicles for the Ministry of Defence were also included within the scope of the amendment.

Within the scope of AutomatFahrV, a differentiation must now be made between test runs for research institutes and vehicle manufacturers on the one hand and the regular use of driver assistance systems that are already permitted and are in series production (parking aid and motorway assistant) on the other.

Regulatory framework:

  • Regulatory authority pursuant to § 102 sections 3a and 3b of the law concerning vehicles (Kraftfahrgesetz) (KFG)
  • Ordinance of the Federal Minister of Transport, Innovation and Technology concerning the legal framework for automated driving (AutomatFahrV).
  • Code of Practice (general guidelines) for test runs pursuant to AutomatFahrV, 2nd section

Use of driver assistance systems (parking aid, motorway assistant)

Provided that the legal framework conditions are met and the systems meet the standards required by law, drivers would in future be able to temporarily take both hands off the steering wheel, as long as the driver assistance system also takes over the driving tasks.

Testing on public roads

The Regulation presently allows the testing of the usage cases like motorway pilot scheme with lane-change assistant, self-driving minibuses and self-driving military vehicles.