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Alphabet's Waymo Reveals Its Self-Driving Chrysler Pacifica Minivans ( 25

Artem Tashkinov writes: Waymo, what used to be a Google division and now is a new division in Alphabet, has revealed its first production ready fully autonomous car based on Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid. The new vehicle for six passengers will retain all its human driving features such as a steering wheel and foot pedals. A limited production -- a fleet of 100 cars -- is expected to hit the road in 2017.
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Alphabet's Waymo Reveals Its Self-Driving Chrysler Pacifica Minivans

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  • by 0100010001010011 ( 652467 ) on Monday December 19, 2016 @08:52PM (#53518449)

    production ready fully autonomous car

    I've been told on Slashdot that this will never happen. These cars will never be in production. Self driving cars will never hit the road. Google spinning this off meant the technology was dead.

    What gives? Slashdotters have never been wrong about technology. /s

    Bring on the self driving cars. I wonder how much better these vans are against motorcycles vs soccer moms.

    • I wonder how much better these vans are against motorcycles vs soccer moms.

      Soccer moms are way better at smashing them off the road. You did say "against", right?

    • I saw people more afraid that they would be put out half-baked, either driving too slowly for prevailing traffic or killing people and/or animals. Until we see how this works, it looks to me like that is coming true.
    • I'm the one who said it. And I was right. This is will never happen. This is just bullshit.

      "A limited production -- a fleet of 100 cars -- is expected to hit the road in 2017"

      So basically more test cars. You can't buy one. "Production" in this case means nothing.
      • This is will never happen

        And as I said last time, can you please cement in your goal posts.

        Define a 'production' run.

        There is a good chance these might never make it down to the average consumer. These are going to be bought by fleets in droves. Some people view car ownership like they view horse ownership. No one is going to come take away your hor^H^H^H car.

        Is it when they make 1,000? 10,000? When the first corporation buys one? When someone earning less than $50k leases one? What is your goal post for what will *never* happen be

        • by AvitarX ( 172628 )

          The article says "production ready", which I take to mean as designed in such a way as to be mass produced.

          A limited run of 100 I wouldn't say is "in production"

          For me, a "production" automotive needs to:
          1) have minimal built by hand going on (these 100 I suspect have a lot of it, but the design would work for more traditional assembly)
          2) be for sale to end users (businesses or people)
          3) be made as people are buying it (not made in limited quantity and then sold)
          4) be street legal

          I don't think this car will

    • What gives? Slashdotters have never been wrong about technology. /s

      Slashdotters are usually pretty good at being right about technology. What they suck at is predicting how popular a technology will be with non-slashdotters, where nebulous things like fashionableness, lack of options (simplicity), and peer pressure (desire to conform to other people's expectations) become a factor. In the case of the iPod, the idiot-proof UI (simplicity) was the predominant factor. Slashdotters didn't mind the complica

  • by TWX ( 665546 )

    The new vehicle for six passengers

    Last time I rode in a Pacifica, the vehicle could accommodate seven passengers in standard configuration, two in the front row, two in the middle row, and three in the back row. On top of that there is an optional installable jumpseat that goes between the middle-row captains' chairs to enable the van to seat eight.

    • by Drew M. ( 5831 )

      With full steering controls and pedals, it's likely they don't want a passenger sitting in the drivers seat

      • What if you're a pleasantly plump driver with your generous thighs squeezing against the steering wheel, how will the automation be able to steer the thing??

        • You jest, but actually that's an interesting question. Will a self-driving car break your arm if it has to spin the wheel suddenly to avoid a cow or insurance fraudster ambling out onto the road?
  • Is self driving trucks, without steering wheels, we need it to keep Europe going in face of the imminent ban of Truck drivers.

  • Car is assembled by robots in the factory. Car drives itself off the factory floor and into the nearest city. Car starts hailing rideshare passengers. No question marks, just profit.
  • I'm torn - on the one hand, I really want a self driving car. On the other hand, I hope to never own a Chrysler again. Oh, the humanity!

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary saftey deserve neither liberty not saftey." -- Benjamin Franklin, 1759