A UK-based car producer Jaguar Land Rover is going to make an investment of $25 million in a mobile taxi hailing application Lyft via its subsidiary mobility services business InMotion. Lyft also got a hefty lump of $500 million from General Motors, another auto giant, in 2016. Both carmakers made an investment in Lyft Transportation Company, Uber’s competitor, following the common reason — to facilitate and speed up self-driving vehicles development and deployment.
Current Lyft drivers will be provided with JLR vehicles and other company’s products to be operated on the roads but the number of autos is still unknown. In return, JLR will be able to conduct tests on autonomous driving in Lyft’s network. If any other strings are attached, remains unknown for the time being.
Apart from it, Lyft concluded some other deals on self-driving technology including NuTonomy and Waymo startups, engaged in this perspective business, to speed up on-demand driverless cars deployment and running them on public roads.
Lyft’s co-founder and president John Zimmer says the company expects most of its vehicles to be replaced by their autonomous counterparts by 2021. Actually, Lyft rather remains passive when it comes to driverless cars production leaving the initiative to its investors like NuTonomy, Waymo, and starting from now JLR which will carry out driverless vehicle tests in the transportation company’s network.
In his turn, Sebastian Peck, InMotion’s managing director, claims that JLR is happy to cooperate with Lyft by developing means for solving transportation issues devising and introducing advanced solutions into the promising business and marks that this innovative and perspective venture will create a real-life platform for autonomous driving services.
All this agitation with increased attention to novelty autonomous driving happens due to multiple predictions of declines in personal cars ownership in the nearest future. That’s why many automakers loosen the purse strings making this kind of investment the norm. Waymo received a substantial number of Chrysler Pacifica minivans and equipped them with autonomous driving hardware. Chevrolet Bolt EVs, produced by General Motors, will also be utilized in Lyft’s network soon. While developing an innovative autonomous-driving system, Uber uses Volvo XC90s.
Currently, almost all bellwethers in car manufacturing business have entered the self-driving vehicles club investing millions and millions of dollars into the future.