Lyft and Motional has announced that residents in LA will now be able to book robotaxis on the ride-hailing company’s app but has not yet said when this service will be available.
Regulatory challenges have prevented commercial adoption of autonomous vehicle technology and this has delayed the deployment of many robotaxi services.
Los Angeles will be the second city where companies will offer driverless service, second to Las Vegas. Motional uses Hyundai’s Moto Co’s IONIQ5 electric car for the robotaxi service. This is a joint venture between the South Korean Manufacturer and automotive technology company Aptiv.
This new platform will therefore use the IONIQ 5 and will give Los Angeles residents their first taste of autonomous technology.
“Los Angeles was the second city Lyft launched back in 2013 and it’s only fitting that it will be the second AV market we launch with our partner, Motional,” said Logan Green, Lyft’s CEO and co-founder. “Scaling AVs only works if riders can get a reliable ride, whether it’s autonomous or not, and together with Motional, Lyft will turn AV technology into transportation for Angelenos everywhere.”
The two companies have been conducting public test rides in the entertainment capital and while Motional offers Level 4 autonomous operation, Lyft will be adding to its platform to provide riders with more choices.