The Google Driverless Car is a project by Google that involves developing technology for driverless cars. The project is currently being led by Google engineer Sebastian Thrun, director of the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Laboratory and co-inventor of Google Street View. Thrun's team at Stanford created the robotic vehicle Stanley which won the 2005 DARPA Grand Challenge and its US$2 million prize from the United States Department of Defense.The team developing the system consisted of 15 engineers working for Google, including Chris Urmson, Mike Montemerlo, and Anthony Levandowski who had worked on the DARPA Grand and Urban Challenges.
The U.S. state of Nevada passed a law in June 2011 concerning the operation of driverless cars in Nevada. Google had been lobbying for driverless car laws. The Nevada law went into effect on March 1, 2012, and the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles issued the first license for a self-driven car in May 2012. The license was issued to a Toyota Prius modified with Google's experimental driver-less technology.
The Self Driven Cars will soon be appearing on Nevada roads after the state's Department of Motor Vehicles approved on Monday the nation's first autonomous vehicle license. The move came after officials rode along on drives on highways, in Carson City neighborhoods and along the famous Las Vegas Strip, the Nevada DMV said in a statement. The Nevada legislature last year authorized self-driven cars for the state's roads, the first such law in the United States.
In August 2011, a human-controlled Google driverless car was involved in the project's first crash near Google headquarters in Mountain View, CA. Google has stated that the car was being driven manually at the time of the accident