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Google Is Seeking Autonomous Car Partnerships

Google Is Seeking Autonomous Car Partnerships

Google's parent firm Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOG) has been working to develop autonomous vehicles on its own for years, but the company's head of its self-driving car project John Krafcik said the firm has reached a point at which more partnerships would be beneficial to the project's forward momentum, according to The Wall Street Journal.

So far, Google has been able to produce a fleet of Lexus SUVs and smaller prototype cars that have been tested in real driving situations. The tech giant also claims to have begun testing self-driving cars in poor weather conditions, which often create problems for their sensors.

Who Will It Be?

At Detroit's North American International Auto Show on Tuesday, Krafcik announced his desire to partner with automakers to a room filled with industry execs, but he didn't mention any names. So far, it appears that Google hasn't made any decisions regarding specific firms it would like to work with, though Krafcik's comments suggested the company was looking for several partnerships rather than just one.

Related Link: Ford CEO Mum On Google Talks At Auto Show

Software Supplier

While Google has essentially been going it alone when it comes to developing an autonomous vehicle, the firm is unlikely to put its own car model on the market. Instead, Google has expressed an interest in developing the software that will run the cars like mapping and navigating programs.

Not The Only One

While some are expecting automakers to jump at the chance to work with the likes of Google right away, other say it's a crowded field with other firms like Mobileye NV (NYSE: MBLY) and Delphi Automotive PLC (NYSE: DLPH) also vying for a chance to develop the world's first fully autonomous vehicle.

Not only that, but Google's version of a self-driving car means completely autonomous — drivers wouldn't need to take control in an emergency situation. However, many automakers are racing to produce cars with self-driving capabilities, but ultimately need a human driver to take control in emergencies and complex environments.


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Posted-In: Alphabet Auto Show Google John Krafcik NAIASNews Tech Media Best of Benzinga

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