After clearing regulatory hurdle, Nuro set to test autonomous vehicles in Houston

Nuro autonomous vehicle
The R2, the second generation of an autonomous vehicle by Nuro, will soon begin testing in the Houston area. (Courtesy Nuro)

The R2, the second generation of an autonomous vehicle by Nuro, will soon begin testing in the Houston area. (Courtesy Nuro)

After receiving the first federal exemption of its kind, the autonomous vehicle company Nuro expects to soon begin testing its latest design on Houston streets.

"In the coming weeks, R2 will begin public road testing to prepare for its first deliveries to customers’ homes with our partners in Houston, Texas," Nuro CEO Dave Ferguson wrote in a blog post about the news.

The US Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration approved an exemption on Feb. 6 allowing the autonomous vehicle to operate without side mirrors or a windshield, according to a news release. The vehicle uses lidar, radar and cameras to monitor its surroundings.

The R2 will be limited to 25 miles per hour and has an updated design from its predecessor, R1, which was tested in Scottsdale, Arizona, in 2018.

Kroger, Walmart and Domino's Pizza have partnered with Nuro to offer autonomous delivery. Kroger has had Nuro-powered Toyota Prius vehicles with human drivers providing deliveries to the Bellaire, Meyerland and West University area since last spring.


A start date for the new round of testing has not been announced.


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