Google Unveils Self-Driving Car, with No Steering Wheel! [w/ video]
Imagine a car with no steering wheel, no pedals, and no one even needed behind the wheel. Science fiction, right? The self-driving car has been a project many automakers have been working hard on for a number of years, but Google might have just cracked the code with its latest prototype. The Google Self-Driving car is the technology company's first serious venture into the business. We’ve seen its self-driving Prius pre-loaded with a high-tech Google mapping system in the past, but this is the brands first true and blue hand-built prototype. And it's mostly adorable. Granted, it’s not the prettiest car we’ve ever seen, but the electric hatchback reaches speeds up to 25 mph and doesn’t even come with pedals or a steering wheel. And like any other car, it’s designed to stop and red lights, stay out of blind spots and even give way to lane-splitters. PHOTOS: See More of the 2014 Google Self-Driving Car Prototype
The front of the car was even designed with the pedestrian in mind. The windshield is made of a flexible plastic, and the front bumper is made of a high-impact foam able to reduce injury to anyone or anything it may hit. “We imagine at some point there will be an accident with one of these vehicles,” said Google’s Director of Safety Ron Medford. “So we’ve designed the front end to be soft.”
Right now Google has no plans to send its prototype into production, but rather, sell off the technology to a current automaker. While we can’t say we’re shocked, we wouldn’t mind having these safer self-drivers on the road.
PHOTOS: See More of the 2014 BMW 2 Series ConnectedDrive