Here’s What it’s Like Driving Behind a Google Self-Driving Car

Watch a Google self-driving car safely navigate the streets of Mountain View, Calif.

Google’s self-driving cars officially took to the streets of Mountain View, California last week, zipping around Google‘s headquarters in the latest stage of testing.

But apparently the driverless cars are hard to find. Martyn Williams, senior U.S. correspondent for IDG News Service, staked out on a mission to capture the tech giant’s self-driving cars in action. He reports seeing the cars “four times over the course of several hours on Friday and Monday outside the Google X research division. In contrast, scores of the previous-generation Lexus SUVs came past me during the same period.”

Williams was able to follow one of Google’s self-driving cars through the neighborhood close to Google X, the company’s innovation lab, reporting no incidents despite the somewhat challenging environment. The car he followed drove “slower than the rest of the traffic” and kept its hazard lights on almost continuously to warn motorists of the slow speed - the electric-powered self-driving cars max out at 25 MPH for safety reasons.

Williams took a video (watch below) of himself driving behind Google’s self-driving car, and watching the car navigate the streets is quite impressive.

They might be hard to find, but the good news is Williams didn’t report any near-collisions, which caused some controversy around the launch of Google’s self-driving cars on California streets last week. Reuters reported that a Google self-driving car cut off a Delphi self-driving car as it was about to change lanes in Palo Alto. Delphi, however, refutes that report.

About the Author

Steve Crowe · Steve Crowe is managing editor of Robotics Trends. Steve has been writing about technology since 2008. He lives in Belchertown, MA with his wife and daughter.
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