Argo AI and Ford to launch self-driving vehicles on Lyft network by end of 2021; targeting 1,000 over next 5 years
Argo AI, Lyft and Ford Motor Company are collaborating to commercialize autonomous ride hailing at scale. The partnership brings together all of the pieces necessary to create a viable autonomous ride hailing service, including the self-driving technology, vehicle fleet and transportation network needed to support a scalable business and deliver an exceptional experience for riders.
Argo AI and Ford will deploy Ford self-driving cars, with safety drivers, on the Lyft network, as part of a network access agreement, with passenger rides beginning in Miami later this year and in Austin starting in 2022.
As vehicles are deployed, Lyft users within the defined service areas will be able to select a Ford self-driving vehicle to hail a ride. This initial deployment phase will lay the groundwork for scaling operations, as the parties are now working to finalize agreements aiming to deploy at least 1,000 autonomous vehicles on the Lyft network, across multiple markets over the next five years.
The collaboration is designed to scale autonomous vehicle deployment using market and safety data that helps define where self-driving technology can safely serve consumers. As part of the agreement, Argo will use anonymized service and fleet data from Lyft to overcome the challenges faced by other autonomous vehicle companies by focusing on where they can build a sustainable business and validate deployment through localized safety data.
In addition, Lyft will receive 2.5% of the common equity of Argo AI as part of the licensing and data access agreements to collaborate on the safe commercialization of autonomous vehicles.
In order to support self-driving vehicle deployments at scale, Ford has established a presence in Miami, Austin and Washington, DC. This includes operations to support commercial fleets, including fueling, servicing and cleaning, ultimately ensuring a great experience for customers. Ford also has established strong community relationships, including working closely with city leaders to provide valuable mobility solutions to meet their unique needs.