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Google Waymo’s Firefly self-driving car to be retired

June 14, 2017, 03:53 PM IST by Pratheek Kunder
Google Waymo’s Firefly self-driving car to be retired

You read that right! The Waymo Firefly self-driving car will no longer be tested or driven on the public roads. The Alphabet-owned firm is phasing out this self-drive car. 

The American software giant said that the Firefly was never meant to be a mass production car. It was rather used as a platform to learn and experiment about self-driving. The Firefly was a pod-like vehicle with two-seats, no pedals or steering wheel. All it had was a computer system and a lot of sensors that took the passengers to whatever destination they wanted to. 

The learnings from the Firefly will now be integrated to the company’s self-driving Chrysler Pacifica minivan. This van is equipped with custom-built radar, LiDAR and vision systems along with a new artificial intelligent computer that will process data much faster. Unlike the Firefly, the Pacifica won’t have a speed limit. In fact, this new vehicle has the capability to reach full speed. The Pacifica will offer comfort and space like the modern cars. Waymo will start this initiative with 600 minivans and is expecting to gain a lot of new insights on life without pedals and steering wheel. 

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