Ride-hailing provider Uber accelerates efforts to replace human drivers in its fleet and states that it will purchase 24,000 Volvo cars designed for autonomous driving between 2019 and 2021. The chosen model is obviously Volvo’s XC90 plug-in hybrid.
The mega order is interpreted as signal that Uber stays committed to autonomous driving under its new Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi. In advance, engineers of both, Volvo and Uber, have worked together to create a base vehicle with appropriate tech for autonomous driving. The deal helps Volvo to strengthen its own autonomous driving unit, lowering the costs for the development of the company’s own self-driving cars due in 2021. And Uber obtains cars that meet the requirements needed to add extra sensors and software, enabling pilot-less driving.
Ahead of the mega order, Uber tested 100 XC90s in Pittsburgh last year. Moreover, the ride-hailing company plans to include self-driving cars of Mercedes-Benz in its service.
electrek.co, forbes.com, bloomberg.com