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Google Taps Austin Artists for Car Design

Bats and tacos on wheels

Some Austinites have spotted a Google self-driving car tooling around Austin all Silicon Valley-like in the past year. Some of them might have even become blasé about the whole thing—even though, according to Google's website, it's so far been testing them in only three cities: Mountain View, Ca. (home of the company's headquarters), Kirkland, Wa., and, that's right, Austin, Texas.

Now the all-white test vehicles are about to get updated in a way is sure to make them all surprising and new again, according to the Austin-American Statesman. The tech company has just tapped local artists Anna Vaught, Catherine Malloy, Annette Neu, Andy Nelson, Florence Swanson and Cathy Carr Haynes to put their work on some of the self-drivers in Austin.

With its "Paint the Town" project, Google's site explains, it invited artists to submit designs based around the ideas of community and neighborhoods. According to the Statesman, the selected artists range from a recent UT grad and a 94-year-old woman who hasn't driven in several years.

The designs, shown below, feature a variety of Austin icons and identities, so residents and visitors might want to keep an eye out for scenes of bats and guitars as they move around the city.