Cruise, GM, and Honda to offer autonomous ridesharing in Japan

The three companies want to set up a joint venture to offer the self-driving ridehail service in Japan in early 2027. After starting with a fleet of 12 autonomous Cruise Origins in the country's capital, the service could be expanded to include other cities.

Image: Honda

Cruise, General Motors, and Honda want to launch a driverless ride-hailing service in Tokyo in early 2026. To that end, the companies now signed a memorandum of understanding to set up a joint venture.

The servce will start in the Japanese capital with a fleet of 12 self-driving vehicles. The goal is to expand the offer to areas outside of Tokyo at a later date and operate a fleet of 500 autonomous EVs.

The vehicle to be used for the service is the all-electric Cruise Origin, an autonomous vehicle developed for driverless operation. It has room for six passengers, no driver’s seat and was conceived without a steering wheel from the very beginning. It was first shown in January 2020.

“This driverless ridehail service will offer an entirely new kind of mobility experience in Japan and target a wide range of customers, including business people, families, visitors and more,” Honda writes in its media statement.

“Honda has been a key partner with Cruise for several years and we’re excited to offer safer and more accessible transportation to customers in Tokyo,” says Kyle Vogt, Founder and CEO of Cruise. “All of our work scaling in dense urban US markets will position us well to address the huge opportunity for autonomous vehicles in Japan.”

Mary Barra, Chair and CEO of GM, adds: “The benefits of AVs – from safety to accessibility – are too profound to ignore and through this important partnership with Cruise and Honda, we’re bringing forward innovation that leverages our expertise in cutting-edge software and hardware to help more people around the world get where they need to go.”,


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