Google announced recently that the company’s self-driving cars has passed over 1 million mark. Last month it was reported that the car prototype has passed 1.7 million marking but this figure is for the manual and autonomous driving combined whereas the 1 million marking is for the autonomous driving only.
Initially, Larry Page, Google’s CEO, has challenged the team to drive 100,000 miles on public roads, but the team has delivered 10 times the number of miles which is equivalent to 75 years of a typical US adult driving. Page then give the team another challenge which is to drive 10 sets of 100 interesting miles including crossing the Golden Gate Bridge, cruising through the curves of Lombard Street in San Fransisco as well as moving through over 200 traffic lights of major boulevard El Camino Real.
Google self-driving cars apparently has navigated over several thousand traffic cones, over 200,000 traffic signs as well as 600,000 traffic lights together with a total of 180 million other vehicles. It also had experienced a funny situation such as fluttering plastic shopping bags as well as ducks crossing the road.
Google has reported to test the self-driving cars for about 6 years now and there are a total of 11 minor accidents such as light damage and no injuries and apparently, the reason for those accidents was never because of the car prototype. The 12th accident happened recently with minor injury but it was caused by another vehicle controlled by human driver rear-ended Google’s car prototype.
The car prototype which has passed the 1 million mark is for the modified Lexus RX 450h SUVs which is integrated with Google’s self-driving car technology. In the future, Google does not plan to manufacture its own self-driving car; however, it seeks to partner with other car makers when the technology is ready and safe to be used.