Case | HBS Case Collection | January 2014 (Revised March 2015)

Google Car

by Karim R. Lakhani, James Weber and Christine Snively


By 2013, Google, while not a traditional manufacturer of automobiles, had invested millions of dollars in its self-driving cars which had logged over 500,000 miles of testing. The Google management team faced several questions. Should Google continue to invest in the technology behind self-driving cars? How could Google's core software-based and search business benefit from self-driving car technology? As large auto manufacturers began to invest in automotive technology themselves, could Google compete? Was this investment of time and resources worth it for Google?

Keywords: Digital Services; innovation; technology; auto industry; Technological Innovation; Online Technology; Market Entry and Exit; Transportation; Auto Industry; United States;


Lakhani, Karim R., James Weber, and Christine Snively. "Google Car." Harvard Business School Case 614-022, January 2014. (Revised March 2015.)