On December 14, 2016, Uber announced a highly publicized test of its autonomous vehicle technology on the streets of San Francisco. The test included rides for various politicians, including State Rep. Steve Glazer and Lieutenant Gov. Gavin Newsome, who both tweeted about their rides. However, other organs of state government were not as supportive. The Department of Motor Vehicles, which is the agency responsible for enforcing California’s autonomous vehicle regulations, promptly sent a sternly worded letter to Uber demanding that it cease such testing until it obtains a DMV permit. California Vehicle Code §38750 authorizes testing of autonomous vehicles on public streets subject to obtaining a DMV permit and meeting certain other requirements, including insurance and extensive data reporting requirements. In a blog post by Anthony Levandowski, head of Uber’s Advanced Technology Group, he indicated that the statute does not apply to these initial tests because the vehicle is not yet capable of operating autonomously without human intervention. In the cease and desist letter, DMV Deputy Director and Chief Counsel threatened Uber with legal action if the company continues with its testing. The situation bears watching closely as California has been a strong supporter of sharing economy innovation and is unlikely to want to be perceived as standing in the way of a self-driving future. A copy of the letter from Soublet to Uber can be found here.