If actual cars malfunctioned as often as traffic lights here went out, we'd be burying a lot more people.
OK, a better example would be automated trains being used on various subway systems around the world. Apparently there are automated trains on London Underground's DLR and Central Line services.
But seriously, why would this be considered a pressing matter?
It's not a pressing matter, Google have huge resources and they like to try and change the world for the better with various projects... like Google TV which is about to seriously kick off, this is just one of those projects and it would be pretty cool if it works out.