Ford Joining The Auto Pack, Will Head To California To Test A Driverless Car In 2016

Google, Tesla and other companies endeavoring to get a driverless vehicle on the market one day will soon have yet another automaker joining them on the testing roads in California: Ford Motor Co. says it’s taking its own autonomous prototype for a few spins on the West Coast.

Ford is going to be putting a fully autonomous version of its Fusion Hybrid to the test in California starting next year, reports PCWorld, with the car going through its paces on real roads near the company’s research and development center in Palo Alto.

That’s awfully near Google’s self-driving stomping grounds, as its driverless prototypes are often seen tooling around Palo Alto as well as nearby Mountain View, home of the company’s Google X research center.

Though Google has the largest fleet of any company approved by the California Department of Motor Vehicles to cruise around with at 73 vehicles, the roads are far from empty of competition: Tesla has 12 licenses, Mercedes Benz has a fleet of five, and Volkswagen, Delphi, Bosch, Nissan and Cruise Automation all have two cars each. BMW and Honda each have one driverless car licensed there.

Ford will test driverless cars in California next year [PCWorld]