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The Streets of Los Angeles Are the Learning Ground for the Waymo Chrysler Pacifica

Waymo, formally known as Google’s self-driving car project, is leaving its comfort home of Phoenix for the busy streets of Los Angeles. Waymo has had a relationship with the Chrysler Pacifica for some time now so it wasn’t unusual to see the combination roaming LA’s streets. Waymo doesn’t want to compete with the Los Angeles traffic; they want their vehicles to know how to operate the city.    

This news came from Waymo’s official Twitter account as they explained how three of the vehicles have started driving crazily around the streets of Los Angeles. They are exploring how the technology will fit in the city’s sizeable transportation environment. The vehicle is stocked with autonomous technology, but the system can also switch entirely to a human who can drive 100% of the time. 

The Waymo Pacifica vehicles that are on the street need to imagine a clear image of how the streets of Los Angeles look. Forbes has discovered that the Waymo vehicles need to memorize the location of the manholes, how long the crosswalks are, and how high the curbs are as well. There are still kinks to work through with these self-driving vehicles.  

Waymo isn’t afraid of new challenges. They welcome them as they know that one day, they’ll be able to remove human drivers and have the Waymo vehicles in place of them. The L.A. traffic is very different from Waymo’s first city of Phoenix, as Phoenix was the first and only pay-to-ride shuttle service. 

Aside from the Hollywood sign, Los Angeles is known for having some of the worst traffic in the United States. With Waymo’s test-drive happening in Los Angeles, it’ll be a new perspective on how the vehicle can run in certain situations and environments from what is used to in Phoenix. The more cities Waymo has under their belts for test-driving the better.     

Chrysler Pacifica Standard Features:

The Chrysler Pacifica 2019 has six trims available. It comes in the L, LX, Touring Plus, Touring L, Touring L Plus, and the Limited. All of the trims can be purchased with a V6 engine and a front-wheel-drive. 

The Uconnect touch-screen that’s on the infotainment on the Chrysler Pacifica comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. All of the Pacificas have SafetyTec Grough, which includes blind-spot monitoring and parking sensors. The LX has tri-zone climate control, touring suspension, and automatic headlights.

You can search the inventory of Chrysler Pacifica’s at Miami Lakes Automall

Photo Credit: Bloomberg.com

 

Miami Lakes Automall Waymo Ride-Hailing Service

Waymo Launches First Driverless Ride-Hailing Service

Miami Lakes Automall Waymo Ride-Hailing Service

Soon after the self-driving Waymo successfully launched and tested its Early Rider program in Phoenix, Arizona, the autonomous car was certified as an autonomous transportation network the same city. That makes the Waymo the first ever driverless vehicle that consumers could use. It initially started the early launch of the Waymo ride-hailing program, where consumers could shop at big names like Walmart and ride-hail a self-driving Waymo vehicle. The success was so great, that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles invested $30 million into upgrading their Chelsea Proving Grounds to test autonomous vehicles for retail, or consumer use. Waymo also bought over 60,000 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid units from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) to expand their fleet to other states. The Waymo launched a robotaxi service in Phoenix, Arizona and its next objective to conquer is California. But before then, the official Waymo ride-hailing app has been made available to about 400 riders participating in the first phase of the program.

Can you imagine that? How easily do we hail a ride today? It’s not like the old days where one had to call a cab or hope there was one passing by. Now, we just need to unlock our smartphone, open an app, pick our destination(s), and a driver will arrive to pick us up. Now take that scenario, but someone’s missing. Only the vehicle shows up – no driver. Say hello to “Waymo One”.

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FCA Invests $30 Million In Autonomous Driving Testing Facility

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Photo Credit/Copyright: connectedautomateddriving.eu

The autonomous world is getting some major upgrades, ya’ll! Thanks to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) investing $30 million in their autonomous vehicle testing facilities, the upgrades will assist the automaker to improve the testing and evaluation of self-driving vehicles at the Chelsea Proving Grounds located in Chelsea, Michigan. The all-new facility, which initiates programs this month, features a dedicated autonomous highway-speed track, 35-acre safety feature evaluation area, and a high-tech command center.

“The all-new facility at Chelsea Proving Grounds will help support and enable the successful rollout of the company’s five-year plan laid out earlier this year,” said Mike Manley, Chief Executive Officer, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and Chief Operating Officer, NAFTA region. “Our ability to test for autonomous and advanced safety technologies enables FCA to offer our customers the features they want across our brand portfolio.”

Beginning with the autonomous highway-speed track, which consists of tunnels, obstacles, on-and-off ramps, and different lighting conditions, it will be used for highway-speed testing exclusively for autonomous vehicle prototypes. Secondly, a 35-acre paved area for testing parking and emergency braking systems will also be designed. Lastly, a 6,500 square-foot command center will be created for external control and tracking of prototype autonomous vehicles using computer monitoring systems.

After opening up in 1954, the Chelsea Proving Grounds has undergone numerous expansions. Comprised of nearly 4,000 acres, 100 miles of road-surface, and off-road replicas of challenging trails, the Chelsea Proving Grounds is in operation seven days a week, 365 days a year. Within the facility, various levels of autonomy will be evaluated, as well as enabling the company to assess FCA vehicles by using test protocols from third parties such as the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), U.S. New Car Assessment Program (NCAP), and European New Car Assessment Program (EuroNCAP).

Additionally, the Chelsea Proving Grounds facility has depended on partnerships with Uber and Google subsidiary Waymo to develop the hardware and software that self-driving vehicles utilize. In May of 2018, FCA announced that it would deliver up to 62,000 additional Chrysler Pacifica Hybrids to Google’s automated driving technology company, while also making Waymo’s tech available in consumer vehicles via a licensing deal. Not only that, but Chrysler is also contributing an additional 20,000 compact cars from Jaguar Land Rover.

“Fiat Chrysler Automotives is committed to bringing self-driving technology to our customers in a manner that is safe, efficient and realistic. Strategic partnerships, such as the one we have with Waymo, will help to drive innovative technology to the forefront”, said the late and former CEO of FCA, Sergio Marchionne.

This is extraordinary news for people that are tired of traffic or having to commute to work. Someday, millions of people won’t have to struggle with such daily inconveniences. Interested in taking the 2018 Chrysler Pacifica for a spin? Stop by the Miami Lakes AutoMall located in Miami Lakes, FL or visit our website for more information on our entire new car inventory selection.  

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Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid + Waymo = Self-Driving Vehicles

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First we were impressed by the Chrysler Pacifica, then we were very impressed by the Pacifica Hybrid, and now we are even more impressed with the Pacifica Hybrid autonomous vehicle. Yep, FCA has partnered up with Google’s self-driving team, Waymo, to build a fleet of self-driving Pacificas.

So far, there are not too many details about the new vehicles or future plans, but here is what we do know.

  • At the moment, we know that the project consists of 100 units and one of them was displayed at the 2017 North American International Auto Show.
  • We also know that the self-driving Pacificas are built on the Pacifica Hybrid platform, so not only are they self-driving minivans, but they are also very fuel efficient and environmentally friendly.

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