Computer driven car hits the streets of Berlin

September 20, 2011 12:00 AM

A car that is completely controlled by a computer has successfully navigated the streets of Berlin, The Associated Press reports.

"The vehicle can recognize other cars on the road, pedestrians, buildings and trees up to 70 meters [yards] around it and even see if the traffic lights ahead are red or green and react accordingly," Raul Rojas, who works with Free University, which tested the car, said at a press event. "In fact, the car's recognition and reaction to its environment is much faster than a human being's reaction."

The automobile, which is a Volkswagen Passat with a price tag of euro400,000, has been developed over a period of four years. Other companies, including Google, have been attempting to create and test similar vehicles.

The cars aren't quite perfect, yet, however. Google's self-driving Prius was involved in a car accident last month, according to VentureBeat. However, it appears as though that accident was caused by human error.

While these cars may not need humans to drive them, it's likely that their owners will still have to take them in for routine maintenance, such as brake service and repair. 

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