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Amazon’s Self-Driving Zoox Taxi Hits California’s Public Roads in Groundbreaking Debut

Amazon’s self-driving car company, Zoox, has tested its robotaxi on open public roads in California, marking an important step in its journey to making autonomous vehicles widely available. Zoox’s autonomous employee shuttle initially served as a shuttle service for workers at its headquarters in Foster City on 11 February. Full-time employees are now able to travel in the self-driving taxi between Zoox’s two main office buildings, with the vehicle able to carry up to four people and drive at speeds of up to 35 mph.

The robotaxi has undergone rigorous testing on private roads and has received necessary approvals from the California Department of Motor Vehicles, allowing it to handle left and right-hand turns, traffic lights, pedestrians, vehicles, and other potential obstacles. Zoox, which was founded in 2014 and purchased by Amazon in 2020, has taken a unique approach to designing electric self-driving vehicles by ditching the steering wheel and brake pedal, claiming these features are unnecessary when there is no human driver. Seats have been designed to face each other to facilitate conversation between passengers.

While other autonomous cars under development resemble those currently on the road, Zoox has continued with its unique design features



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