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Google spin-off Waymo reveals new autonomous minivans

Self-driving cars just went soccer mom

Driverless cars, such as this model by Waymo, could revolutionize transportation for Americans with disabilities Waymo

After announcing earlier this week that Google’s self-driving car initiative would become its own company, Waymo unveiled their first vehicle—a Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivan. Outfitted with Google/Waymo’s self-driving technology, the autonomous minivan is expected to hit public roads in early 2017.

Although Google designed their own steering wheel-free vehicle in 2014, the company’s focus moving forward will be to partner with existing car companies like Chrysler. Google’s been in talks with a number of large car manufacturers with the aim of delivering self-driving cars to consumers by 2020.

The Pacifica vehicle design was road-tested at Chrysler facilities in Michigan and Arizona before it was put into production in October. Bloomberg reported that the 100 new cars will become a part of a semi-autonomous ridesharing service along the model of Uber or Lyft.

Uber has it’s own self-driving fleet in the works, spending some $300 million to launch a self-driving car service by 2021.


Via: Dezeen, Bloomberg, Waymo