Toyota invests $500m into Uber to produce self-driving vehicles

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Toyota infuses $500 million in uber in order to be part of a deal to jointly work together on mass-production and development of self-driving cars in a bid by both to catch up to rivals in the hotly competitive autonomous driving business.

Toyota said in a statement that, the deal is aimed at advancing and bringing to market autonomous ride-sharing as a mobility service at scale, which reportedly values Uber at about $72 billion.

According to the CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, “The deal is the first of its kind for Uber and signals our commitment to bringing world-class technologies to the Uber network.

The agreement came as the smartphone-summoned ride service is throttling back its solo effort to develop autonomous vehicle technology, which the make the companies, the first pilot rollout set for 2021.

The testing will enable Uber to gather data on different scenarios that will be recreated in computer simulations, and also develop more accurate mapping for the vehicles.

Uber is among a number of technology and car companies racing toward what some say is an inevitable future in which vehicles drive themselves.

The statement said the “mass-produced autonomous vehicles” would be owned and operated by “mutually agreed-upon third-party autonomous fleet operators.”

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