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London wants Google’s self driving cars

GOOGLE and London’s transport bosses are in “active discussions” to trial the internet giant’s driverless cars in the British capital.

If given the green light – it would be the first time Google’s autonomous cars would be tested outside of the United States.

The deputy mayor for transport in the capital confirmed officials met with Google to encourage extending their pilot scheme to the city.

“It is still very early days and we understand Google are not yet ready to trial their self-driving cars outside of north America. We would be keen for a trial to happen in London whenever Google are ready to conduct trials in other countries,” Isabel Dedring, London’s Deputy Mayor for Transport said in a statement.

Google has been testing their driveless cars since 2009, where trials have been limited to Mountain View in California, Texas and Washington state.

The battery-operated vehicles use a system of lasers, radar and cameras to detect objects around them in order to complete journeys.

At a future of transport event Dedring said that while she was “personally a bit sceptical about the technology”, driverless cars could makes roads safer and reduce transport costs.

The British government has announced £20 million (RM120 million) would be invested in UK driverless car technology with Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin saying the technology would “profoundly change the way we travel within years”.

Trials of the cars have not gone without problems with developers still trying to improve how the vehicles interact with other road users.

A report published by the California Department of Motor Vehicles detailed a collision with another car which left a Google test driver in hospital.

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