Google Executive Chris Urmson Quits Self Driving Car Project

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Chris Urmson, a key Executive who was behind Google's self driving car project announced that he is leaving the team. He is leaving after seven and a half years.

Alphabet Inc's Google had named Urmson as the project's Chief Technical Officer, after they hired John Krafcik, an ex-Hyundai Executive as the Chief Executive of the project.

Urmson has been the public face of Google's autonomous cars since the launch of the project. Krafcik confirmed Urmson's departure from the company via twitter. On Friday, Urmson said in a blogpost that he is ready for a fresh challenge, but was not sure what he was going to do next.

"Going to take some time and get some perspective from outside of Google," he wrote in a text message to Reuters.

Google self-driving car project spokesman, Johnny Luu confirmed Urmson's departure and praised him:
"Seven years ago, the idea that a car could drive itself wasn't much more than an idea. Chris has been a vital force for the project, helping the team move from a research phase to a point where this life-saving technology will soon become a reality,"

Google's self driving project will become a stand alone company this year, and it has already hired its first general council. As for the cars, Google has clocked around 1.8 million miles in Texas, California, Arizona, and Washington state.

Google has also announced that it has no timetable for making self-driving vehicles available to the public.

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Story first published: Saturday, August 6, 2016, 10:54 [IST]
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