Toyota Wants to Mass Produce AI-Powered "Fully Driverless Robotaxis."

In partnership with autonomous-driving company Pony.ai.

Tech & Gadgets
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Two Toyota-owned entities, Toyota Motor Investment Company (TMCI) and GAC Toyota Motor Company (GTMC) have just entered into a joint venture with leading autonomous-driving company Pony.ai — with the intention of mass producing “fully driverless robotaxis.”

As part of the joint venture, the China-based Toyota entities will invest more than $139 million USD, which brings its total investments in Pony since 2020 to a total of roughly $539 million USD.

Terms in the partnership outline that GTMC will provide Pony.ai with Toyota-branded battery electric vehicles, which are equipped with Toyota’s vehicle redundant systems and deemed suitable for L4 autonomous driving development. The vehicles will be equipped with Pony.ai’s autonomous driving tech and run on Pony.ai’s robotaxi network platform, “PonyPilot+.”

The latest investment is meant to continue development, with public road tests having already begun in April, utilizing Toyota’s Sienna Autono-MaaS (S-AM) vehicle, equipped with Pony.ai’s sixth-generation autonomous driving software and hardware system.

Parties involved say they want to “deliver safe and convenient robotaxi services for riders,” as well as bulk up the existing fleet of 200 vehicles, which are currently testing in Guangzhou, Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen.

In other tech news, Google researchers equip AI to transform brain scans into music.

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