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Self-driving minivans killed Waymo's adorable gumdrop car

I'm going to miss that little guy.


When Google -- whose car division is now called Waymo -- first dove into the self-driving-car game, it rolled out the cute little gumdrop car that would go on to represent its efforts for three years. But that's all about to change.

In a post on Medium Monday, two members of Waymo's team announced that its gumdrop -- which is actually called Firefly -- will no longer be of use to the company. Instead, Waymo will focus all its autonomous efforts on the fleet of Chrysler Pacifica minivans it's outfitted with self-driving tech.

I'll never stop calling it the Gumdrop.


According to the post, the car was never meant for production anyhow. It was a proof of concept, a from-scratch creation that Waymo would use as a test bed for all manner of design and manufacturing efforts. It helped the company determine ideal sensor placement and other developments that would go on to help the company grow as it spun off from Google proper.

But the torch must be passed on. Waymo's Pacifica fleet is capable of fitting seven, rather than two, which makes it a much better platform for the company's first public pilot program. Before it rolls off into the sunset, though, it'll take a trip through Arizona and Texas, and a couple Firefly models will be installed at museums in California and London.