After celebrating 80 years in business, Toyota shared a bold vision around mobility for all paired with a transformation of their business model, explaining: “rather than conduct development on our own―without friends and partners―we can partner and collaborate with others who share our aspirations.” Today, Aurora is excited to become part of that vision and announce our latest milestone: a long-term, global, and strategic collaboration with Toyota and Denso, one of the largest global manufacturers and tier-one automotive suppliers, respectively, to build and globally deploy self-driving cars at scale.
This collaboration has two primary goals:
It brings our engineering teams together to develop and test driverless-capable vehicles equipped with the Aurora Driver, starting with the Toyota Sienna. By the end of 2021, we expect to have designed, built, and begun testing an initial fleet of these Siennas near our areas of development, including the Aurora Test Site Network.
It brings our companies together 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. As part of this long-term effort, we’ll be exploring mass production of key autonomous driving components with Denso and a comprehensive services solution with Toyota for when these vehicles are deployed at scale, including financing, insurance, maintenance, and more.
Chris Urmson, Aurora CEO, said: “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, said: “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.”
We’ve long said it’s through our strategic partnerships and an independent and flexible transportation ecosystem that we’ll make this technology a reality. A global manufacturing partner enables us to build an affordable product and a network partner allows us to deploy at scale—we now uniquely have both. Our partners are committed for the long-haul and share our vision of the future, translating to a clear path to enter and lead the driverless ride-sharing market. At Aurora, we’re moving fast and continue to combine our technical agility with strong partnerships that give us the resources and momentum to be the leaders in self-driving.
The momentum continues at Aurora and we’rehiring in all disciplinesto help us solve one of the biggest challenges of our generation. Check out our careers page to see open positions and learn more about what it’s like to work at Aurora.