Ford has announced that it is working with Lyft, the app-based taxi service, to deploy its self-driving cars by 2021. Several announcements have been made recently regarding modern taxi services, automakers, and tech companies as the rush to semi or fully autonomous vehicles gets faster and faster.
According to Ford, engineers from Ford and Lyft will build the software necessary for Ford’s autonomous cars to talk to the Lyft app. Ford has been working on autonomous vehicles for several decades, recently announcing concepts like a self-driving pizza delivery vehicle with Domino’s Pizza.
Sherif Marakby of Ford’s autonomous and electrified vehicles wrote, “think of it this way: Someday, when you open the Lyft app during a period of high demand, Ford and Lyft software will need to be capable of quickly dispatching a self-driving vehicle so that you can get to your destination as quickly and as safely as possible.”
Ford also recently announced several billion dollars of investment into electrification and autonomous vehicles, significantly more than was previously allocated. We’ll begin to see more electrification in trucks and SUVs too, vehicle categories that have been neglected in the push for electrification in the past. GM also recently announced a significant investment in electrified and full electric vehicles, promising at least 20 new EVs by 2023.
GM said they have a vision of a world with zero crashes, zero emissions, and zero congestion. Volvo and several other automakers are following the same path.
Self-driving cars represents an estimated $7 trillion industry that will continue to expand and grow in the next decade. Toyota said they now have a “Connected Car” division whichwill consist of people from various strategy, planning, development, engineering and operations groups for connected service and hardware systems, which will help advance and personalize the in-car technology experience for customers.