Uber and Motional have announced a commercial agreement to offer fully driverless rides using Motional’s new all-electric IONIQ-5 based robotaxis.
The 10-year framework is expected to reach millions of Uber rides and to create one of the largest deployments of autonomous vehicles on a major ride-hail network.
The partnership created the opportunity for effective scaling and broad adoption of AVs by pairing Motional’s advanced driverless technologies with Uber’s large network of customers, said Motional.
The first of the trips is expected to start later this year and will be strategically deployed across cities in the U.S.
Motional and Uber have a shared vision for AVs to offer an affordable, convenient, and safe transportation option for everyday travel.
“This agreement will be instrumental to the wide scale adoption of robotaxis,” said Karl Iagnemma, President and CEO of Motional.
“Motional now has unparalleled access to millions of riders and a roadmap to scale significantly over the next ten years. We’re proud to partner with Uber to bring both driverless ride-hail and deliveries to life in cities throughout the U.S.“
The partnership will see Uber share specific insights to efficiently allocate and position Motional’s vehicles.
“We’re excited to leverage the power of Uber’s platform to bring Motional’s advanced autonomous technology to a wide range of riders at the push of a button,” said Noah Zych, Global Head of Autonomous Mobility and Delivery at Uber.
“The scope of this partnership shows the important role that shared autonomous vehicles will play in the future of transportation, and in Uber’s strategy to be the global platform to help you go anywhere and get anything.”
The announcement represents an expansion of the Uber and Motional partnership following a successful collaboration on delivery. Earlier this year, Motional began conduction autonomous food deliveries for Uber Eats customers in California. The pilot is said to be well received by customers and since then, the companies have expanded their delivery operations to service more restaurants.
Motional’s IONIQ 5 robotaxis are fully electric, zero tailpipe-emissions vehicles, combining the transformative power of electrification and autonomy. The deployment of these vehicles on the Uber network will positively contribute to Uber’s commitment to being a zero-emissions platform by 2030 in the U.S..