Ah, Google’s self-driving cars. Not only were they designed to save the planet (thanks to the Toyota Prius’ Hybrid Synergy Drive), but they were built to save drivers from ourselves by taking human error out of the motoring process. Not so fast: one of Google’s Prii has been involved in an at-fault crash in California.
An eagle-eyed reader over at Jalopnik spotted one of Google’s cars — which have been driving around California and Nevada for months now without problems — stopped after rear-ending another dark gray third-generation Prius in Mountain View, California.
While it doesn’t look like either car suffered significant physical damage (just the typical scratches to the plastic bumper covers), but the crash is certainly a bruise to Google’s ego: up until now the cars were faultless. One of the car’s engineers even went so far to call it the “perfect driving mechanism.”
And that may be right: Google later told Business Insider that the crash happened while the car was fully under the control of a human driver. If this is true, then Google’s record remains spotless and human drivers once again look the fool. If not, it should be interesting to see how the company will fill out the insurance forms on a car that crashed itself.
In the meantime, Google, might we suggest outfitting that perfect mechanism to, oh, a City Safety-equipped Volvo?