Waymo orders 1000s of Pacificas for driverless taxis

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Originally, Waymo was testing in California with bespoke R&D vehicles, but made the switch to using Pacifica Hybrids in early 2017.

This year, Waymo is committed to initiate on its autonomous ride-hailing service in Phoenix.

FCA said that it will provide thousands more of Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivans to Waymo to support the world's first self-driving service.

Neither Waymo nor FCA would disclose the specific number of vehicles that were bought, nor the amount of money that was trading hands. The company is also performing public road tests in 25 cities, including San Francisco, metro Detroit, and most recently, Atlanta. "The Pacifica Hybrid minivans offer you a versatile inside and a comfy ride experience, and these additional vehicles will help us climb". They said minivan's electrical, powertrain, chassis and structural systems of the minivan make it an ideal mass-production platform for Waymo's self-driving system. The Pacifica Hybrid earns a rating of 84 MPGe combined. Now, the company is ordering "thousands" of additional minivans for their fleet.

Fiat Chrysler, the only major automaker with more industrial debt than cash, doesn't have the resources to pour into expensive development when the outcomes are unclear, Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne has told investors. He added that their partnership with the company is strengthening and growing that indicates the latest sign of their commitment to this technology. This is said to have been a technical milestone and vehicle was the first one to attain Level 4 autonomy.

GM is already planning on deploying about 2,500 autonomous vehicles in 2019, which are expected to have no steering wheel or pedals, making them the first real robot-taxis to be out on the road. The card is also being tested on public roads in Austin, Texas, Kirkland, Washington, Mountain View, California and Phoenix, Arizona. FCAU and the tech company worked together to design the minivans to easily facilitate Google's self-driving systems, comprising sensors and computers.

The Pacificas that FCA supplies to the tech company are specifically created to integrate Waymo's autonomous driving hardware and software.