GM’s Cruise is delaying the launch of its robot-taxi services in the U.S. The CEO says the group will now be scaling up in preparation for its launch in 2020 in San Francisco which will be its first market.
Cruise had previously stated that it expected to launch by 2019.
In a blog, Cruise’s CEO Dan Ammann writes: ‘In order to reach the level of performance and safety validation required to deploy a fully driverless service in San Francisco, we will be significantly increasing our testing and validation miles over the balance of this year, which has the effect of carrying the timing of fully driverless deployment beyond the end of the year’.
He adds: ‘While Cruise is already logging the most miles in a complex environment, having our cars running many more miles on the road will further accelerate our rate of learning and safety validation. It will also give us crucial operational learnings from running a larger scale fleet and a larger scale ride service, which we currently operate for our employees’.
Over the past year, Cruise has raised $7.25 billion from prominent technology investors, including the SoftBank Vision Fund and T. Rowe Price and from its automotive partners General Motors and Honda.