Ford and Google have joined together for a non-exclusive joint venture to create self-driving cars with the technology created by Google. The venture will be legally separate from Ford, in part to shield the automaker from liability concerns.
At a shareholder’s meeting, Brin discloses that one of Google’s self-driving cars was rear-ended at a traffic signal during the past week. The cars have been involved in 12 accidents while covering more than 1.7 million miles over the past six years.
I’m very proud of the record of our cars. Our goal is to beat human drivers.
In response to a request by Consumer Watchdog’s Simpson that the company release the self-driving cars’ accident reports filed with the California Department of Motor Vehicles and other government agencies to give the public a better understanding of the risks posed by the vehicles, Brin says the documents wouldn’t disclose anything different from a summary that the company posted online three weeks ago. Google says its self-driving cars have been rear-ended eight times (including the most-recent accident), side-swiped twice and hit by another vehicle rolling through a stop sign. Simpson says the records would shed more light by at least revealing the dates, times and precise locations of each accident. Brin:
I suppose we could give more detail and we are open to that, but you are not going to learn anymore.
Reuters takes Google’s driverless car for a test drive.