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Friday 22 August 2014

Google's driverless cars mastering city streets and motorways

Published 28/04/2014 | 13:44

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Handout photo of the Google self-driven car in Las Vegas
The Google self-driven car in Las Vegas
A bicyclist rides by a Google self-driving car at the Google headquarters
A bicyclist rides by a Google self-driving car at the Google headquarters
The Google driverless cars for trips in Silicon Valley are legal in California, Nevada and Florida. Justin Sullivan/Getty

Google says it has turned a corner in its pursuit of a car that can drive itself.

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The leader of the technology giant's driverless car project wrote in a blog post that test vehicles are becoming far more adept at city driving.

They can already comfortably handle motorways, he said, but city driving presents a virtual obstacle course of pedestrians, cyclists and blind corners.

Google says the cars can now negotiate thousands of urban situations that would have stumped them a year or two ago.

To navigate and avoid crashes, Google's fleet of retrofitted Lexus SUVs relies on sensors such as lasers and radar. A driver is ready to take over if needed.

Google has said it wants to get the technology to the public by 2017.

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