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Google picks ex-Hyundai CEO to lead its self-driving car project

Google has announced a CEO for its self-driving car initiative, selecting auto industry veteran John Krafcik to lead its efforts in this segment. Krafcik will take over from Chris Urmson, who will oversee the project as technical director.

Krafcik served as the CEO of Hyundai Motor America from 2008 to 2013, following a fourteen-year stint at Ford in product development. He's slated to commence his role as the CEO of Google's autonomous car initiative later this month. The news comes on the heels of last week's announcement that the search giant is set to increase manufacturing of its self-driving car prototypes.

A Google spokesperson commented to Re/code that the project would remain in Google's X labs for now, although it could be spun off into its own company in the Alphabet umbrella in the future:

The project is not becoming an Alphabet company at this stage, though it's certainly a good candidate to become one at some point in the future.

Source: Re/code

Harish Jonnalagadda
Harish Jonnalagadda

Harish Jonnalagadda is a Senior Editor overseeing Asia at Android Central. He leads the site's coverage of Chinese phone brands, contributing to reviews, features, and buying guides. He also writes about storage servers, audio products, and the semiconductor industry. Contact him on Twitter at @chunkynerd.

  • I still don't think I can get used to the Alphabet stuff Check out the new Nexus!, not a Rick roll
  • This one is weird because Self Driving cars aren't technically an Alphabet company yet.
  • I know but the mention at the end of the article struck me Check out the new Nexus!, not a Rick roll
  • Sounds like Google is committed to spending some big money on this project. This will eat up a dollar or 2. I am interested in what it comes up with. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Likewise I'm interested in the outcome of this as well. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I would like to see it be a 'mode'. Let's say you have a 100 miles on I-95. Instead of doing it in manual, you could put it on auto. If you fall asleep it sets off an alarm about 10 miles out with increasing volume. If you do not awake within 5 miles it finds a safe place to pull over. That is a rough sketch of what I am thinking +++ Insert witty signature, watch as others not get it, profit +++