Needless to say, the DMV is not prepared to deal with Google's self-driving car, which the company just unveiled in its latest prototype form for all geeks to gawk at. As Google announced on their blog today, the new prototype is fully functional, so make all the jokes you want in reference to the parody of this project in Silicon Valley, this thing is happening. As the team writes, "We’re going to be spending the holidays zipping around our test track, and we hope to see you on the streets of Northern California in the new year." Oh joy.
CBS 5 was just reporting that the DMV had set itself a deadline of December 31 to figure out what its rules will be governing driverless cars, and they're definitely going to be missing that deadline. "DMV officials say they won’t let the public get self-driving cars until someone can certify that they don’t pose an undue risk," but of course it's impossible to say since everything is still in the prototype and testing phase. Apparently six other companies besides Google are racing to get their own self-driving cars to market and are testing them on California roads we'd already heard about Audi getting a permit to test their A7 driverless car in and around San Francisco this fall.
Gizmodo has a side-by-side comparison of the current prototype with the last. The obvious differences are mostly cosmetic, and the former model did not have functional headlights.
When these things will actually be for sale to the general public is anyone guess. Getting home from the bar will, obviously, never be the same.
As to when Uber will order their first fleet of these and create pandemonium and fear in the streets of every American city as robots replace human drivers, that's also anyone's guess.