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Ford, Toyota, GM and others could help Google make self-driving cars

Google self-driving cars
Google is definitely choosing function over form

Google has turned to the world's biggest auto companies to aid it in its efforts to make self-driving cars a reality.

This has been mainly a solo project for Google so far, but now the search company is in talks to assemble a super team of car makers that could General Motors, Ford, Toyota, Daimler, Volkswagen, and others.

It's unclear exactly how these companies will be helping, and Google has reportedly not yet determined whether it will manufacture vehicles itself or simply provide other auto makers with systems and software.

But together they hope to get autonomous vehicles on the market by 2020, Google self-driving cars Director Chris Urmson told Re/code.

Red lights and red tape

Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk said earlier in the week that he expects the lack of federal regulations for self-driving cars to delay them until 2022 or 2023, but Urmson told the site that Google doesn't "see any particular regulatory hurdles."

The next step, Google has revealed, is to unleash a fleet of fully autonomous prototypes that will have a tester on board - but no pedals or steering wheel with which they could intervene if something goes awry.

It's a bold show of confidence from Google, and a sign that the company really does have utmost faith in the technology it's built here.