U.S. autonomous technology group Aurora has announced a long-term, global, and strategic collaboration with Toyota and Densot to build and globally deploy self-driving cars at scale. This collaboration will develop and test driverless-capable vehicles equipped with the Aurora Driver, starting with the Toyota Sienna.
By the end of 2021, Aurora says the companies expect to have designed, built, and begun testing an initial fleet of Siennas.
The partnership also aims to lay the groundwork for the mass-production, launch, and support of these vehicles with Toyota on ride-hailing networks, including Uber’s, over the next few years. Denso will supply key autonomous driving components.
Chris Urmson, Aurora CEO says: “Toyota has an unparalleled legacy, engineering expertise, leadership, and ability to deliver high-quality, affordable, and reliable vehicles. They’re also the preferred vehicle brand for transporting riders on ride-hailing networks, so we’re excited and honored to work with them to unlock driverless mobility services with the Aurora Driver. Our development work on highway driving to support our first commercial product, a driverless truck, will also be critical for safely moving people, as a significant fraction of ride-share bookings today require the ability to drive over 50 mph.”
Keiji Yamamoto, Operating Officer of Toyota and President of Connected Company, adds: “Toyota is dedicated to creating and realizing mobility for all by focusing on technology that will move people safely and responsibly, a vision Aurora shares with us. By combining our expertise and know-how in vehicle control systems, mass-production, Connected Car technology, and our advanced safety support systems with Aurora’s industry-leading approach to self-driving technology, we aim to commercialize and deliver safe, high-quality, and affordable autonomous ride-sharing vehicles and services.”
In December 2020, Aurora announced the acquisition of Uber’s self-driving unit, Advanced Technologies Group (ATG).