Not only is Waymo operating a fleet of Chrysler Pacifica minivans from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles but it also intends on purchasing 20,000 Jaguar I-Pace models as part of a self-driving taxi service. The technology company is also working with a third automaker, Honda, but details about the company’s work together remains limited.
However, during a recent interview with Bloomberg a week after the fatal Uber crash, Waymo chief executive John Krafcik, indicated that the self-driving division of Google may create a bespoke vehicle with Honda.
When asked about what the two companies are planning, Krafcik said we shouldn’t expect to see a “traditional car driven on roads.” It’s impossible to know exactly what Krafcik means by that but it sure sounds as if Waymo and Honda are developing something unconventional. It’s therefore reasonable to assume that it won’t simply be an existing Honda model that’s laden with Waymo’s autonomous hardware and software.
Krafcik went on to suggest that the vehicle may move people and goods, could be smaller than a truck, and may be free of a traditional steering and brakes.
Honda and Waymo formed a partnership in late 2016 to integrate the tech company’s self-driving technology in Honda models. However, these comments from Krafcik indicate that the two are working together more closely than first realized.