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Self-driving cars could be hitting our roads in as little as two years, once European manufacturers start bringing them to market, Transport Minister Simon Bridges says.

He went on to say he "wouldn't be surprised that if in the next two or three years ... there will be those who try to bring them to New Zealand, and good on them...That will be something we need to be ready for."

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Automakers are facing a delima.

New automated driving technology heralds a big change in the way drivers relate to their cars - few features threaten the traditional promise of the automobile - freedom, independence, control of the road - like a computer that can drive far safer and has no qualms about taking the wheel.

That has put automakers in an awkward spot to reach car buyers who are drawn to the idea of driving with fewer dangers and drudgeries but are still leery of self-driving technology.

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Car-makers in New Zealand are recalling more than 50,000 vehicles over a potentially deadly airbag fault. It's part of an international recall of more than 34 million vehicles, due to an issue with problematic airbag inflators which could see airbags deploy with such force that it could send potentially lethal shrapnel into drivers and passengers.

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Toyota's Mirai (NZ$76,226) is the first mass-market car to run off hydrogen. Due in the US in October, the four-seater can drive farther and refuel faster than any electric car a driver can buy. But the world's biggest car company is placing a risky bet on hydrogen, now sold at only a dozen American fueling stations (10 of the 12 are in California).

The type of hydrogen fuel cells that run the Mirai have been repeatedly tried and abandoned by rival automakers, and electric-car pioneers have panned the technology as unrealistic and doomed to fail.

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Toyota's Mirai (NZ$76,226) is the first mass-market car to run off hydrogen. Due in the US in October, the four-seater can drive farther and refuel faster than any electric car a driver can buy. But the world's biggest car company is placing a risky bet on hydrogen, now sold at only a dozen American fueling stations (10 of the 12 are in California).

The type of hydrogen fuel cells that run the Mirai have been repeatedly tried and abandoned by rival automakers, and electric-car pioneers have panned the technology as unrealistic and doomed to fail.

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There's a new app on the market that allows Kiwi drivers to compete with friends, family, colleagues, and other motorists for the title of safest driver.

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Drivers have admitted internet banking, writing Facebook posts and even playing games on their smartphones while behind the wheel.  But a new campaign has been designed to reduce these potentially dangerous habits.

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After a spate of accidents involving foreign drivers, the driving abilities of tourists are in the spotlight. But how good are Kiwi drivers? The Press sent two reporters, Martin van Beynen and Brittany Mann, to do a mock driving test to see how good their road behaviour and skills were.

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The drink driving limit for people over 20 dropped from 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood to 50mg per 100ml last December.

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Safety fears over tourist drivers on New Zealand roads became so heated this summer that even Prime Minister John Key got involved, urging calm after people started taking car keys from overseas drivers to keep them off the roads. But what do the statistics tell us?

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