Google May Have Found a Partner in FCA for Building Its Autonomous Cars

Try to remember when exactly did this craze about autonomous vehicles start? It feels like it's been one of the most important subjects for ages, when in fact it didn't really catch speed until the last year or two.
Chrysler Pacifica 1 photo
Photo: FCA
Among the companies that have invested a lot of time and money into the development of this technology, Google was one of the most active. Its fleet of Lexus RX450h SUVs and tiny bubble cars has been roaming the streets of selected US locations, gathering information, learning from experience, and stacking mile after mile after mile.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, on the other hand, has been rather silent for such an important player on the automotive market. It didn't seem to jump on the bandwagon, just like it didn't bite too deep into the electric car either. Now, though, the trend is so obvious that not even Sergio Marchionne can ignore it anymore, so FCA is basically forced to find a solution.

And looking at the landscape of self-driving cars, the one it found isn't too shabby at all. After chasing down GM for the better part of last year in an attempt to merge the efforts of the two companies, FCA might have now found a much better match. With GM, there wasn't much the FCA could offer that the American giant didn't already have or know how to do. With Google, things are significantly different.

Google isn't going to build its own car - at least not yet - but the introduction of the autonomous cars isn't going to wait: if everything goes well with the lawmakers, we'll probably have them on the roads by 2020. So Google needed a partner with production capabilities and car manufacturing experience just as much as FCA needed access to the autonomous technology.

Mutual benefit is the foundation of a lasting partnership, but as of now, their connection hasn't been confirmed. It's all based on a report published by AutoExtremist quoting an unnamed source, but it seems to hold water. Stay tuned for any further development (or, at least, an infirmation) of this story that could translate into a very big break for Fiat and Chrysler. There's no doubt that whoever gets their hands on Google's technology is going to make their cars a lot more appealing in this autonomous future that seems to be destined for us.
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About the author: Vlad Mitrache
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"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
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