Nica Onate / Waymo | December 20, 2016 11:49
Driverless Pacifica Hybrid equipped with latest hardware and updated sensors.
Just a week after Google (Alphabet Inc.) rebranded their autonomous car division to Waymo, the company reveals their new Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid-based fully autonomous minivan.
Waymo says the Pacifica Hybrid is now equipped with the latest hardware, several revamped sensors, as well as a new computer. Apart from these, few of the major systems were also revised.
Back in May 2016, Google and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) teamed up in order to build at least 100 driverless car for Waymo. Now, the company gives us a peek at the finished product following six months of developing the once standard Pacifica Hybrid.
The autonomous Pacificas begun production just last October. Before then however, Waymo already had a few units running around as prototypes for testing. With these units they were able to run several tests such as driving more than 200 hours in extreme weather conditions.
These stringent tests were mostly performed at the FCA's Chelsea Proving Grounds as well as at the Arizona Proving Grounds. The rest of the tests were done at the Waymo's own test track in California.
According to Waymo, all of the 100 self-driving Pacific Hybrid minivans will conduct a series of tests on public roads starting 2017.