At the Code Conference, Google has announced that it has built a self-driving car prototype from scratch. The new prototypes will not have a steering wheel, mirrors or brake pedals. Google has also limited the speed of these prototype vehicles at 25 mph. The cars have software and sensors to replace all of these.
The company says that the car will be driven entirely by computer. The car has two sets of steering and braking systems, so if one fails the other can take over. Google emphasizes safety in it self-drive cars and are equipped with sensors that remove blind spots, and can detect objects at a distance of more than two football fields in all directions, which the company notes is helpful particularly on busy streets with several intersections. The front of the car is built with foam, and the windshield is flexible to reduce the injury if it collides with pedestrians, bikers or anything else.
These cars are not luxurious and have two seats with seatbelts, a luggage space, buttons to start and stop, and a screen that displays the route. The company is expecting to build hundred prototypes over the next two years and later this summer it will start testing these prototype vehicles. Google is not planning to sell these cars directly, instead looking for friends and partners to bring them to market. It is also possible that Google partners with car-for-hire service Uber, or even possibly develop an Uber-like service by itself.