Aurora is partnering with Toyota on self-driving taxis
The three plan to have the first of these autonomous minivans on the road for testing by the end of 2021.
Aurora, the autonomous-car company run by Chris Urmson, one of the early leaders of Waymo, announced Tuesday that it will be partnering with Toyota and Denso to roll out robo-taxis.
The link-up will see a three-way partnership, with Toyota providing Sienna minivans, Denso mass-producing specialized hardware for autonomous vehicles, and Aurora supplying the technical know-how to make these cars drive themselves. The three plan to have the first of these autonomous minivans on the road for testing by the end of 2021.
The long-term goal of the partnership is to provide these vehicles to ride-hailing networks like Uber's, which sold its own self-driving research division to Aurora in December, in the next few years.
Mike Murphy ( @mcwm) is the director of special projects at Protocol, focusing on the industries being rapidly upended by technology and the companies disrupting incumbents. Previously, Mike was the technology editor at Quartz, where he frequently wrote on robotics, artificial intelligence, and consumer electronics.