A public robotaxi service has been launched in Las Vegas, USA by Motional and Uber, marking the first time that Uber’s customers can hail an autonomous ride in Motional’s all-electric Hyundai Ioniq 5-based robotaxis. The vehicles will be available on UberX and Uber Comfort Electric.
The new service is being launched with vehicle operators on board to lay the foundations for a fully driverless commercial service, with the aim of launching the driverless service to the public in 2023.
This service is the first in the pair’s 10-year commercial partnership that will result in Motional’s Level 4 autonomous vehicles being deployed for ride-hail and deliveries on the Uber network in major US cities. Beginning with a launch in Las Vegas, the service will be expanded to Los Angeles in the future.
The Las Vegas pilot comes soon after Motional and Uber finalized their multi-year partnership, and demonstrates a collaborative commitment to introduce autonomous technology to millions of Uber customers.
“Today, Motional becomes the first AV company to conduct all-electric autonomous rides on the Uber network for public passengers,” said Akshay Jaising, vice president of commercialization at Motional. “It’s a testament to our technology and the power of our partnership with Uber that we’re able to go from concept to consumer in such a short time. Las Vegas is the first of many cities in which Motional’s AVs will become an everyday transportation option for Uber customers looking for a safe and convenient ride.”
“Motional have proved themselves to be an industry leader, steadily and safely progressing autonomous technology toward a driverless future,” commented Noah Zych, global head of autonomous mobility and delivery at Uber. “We’re thrilled to take this next step together in Las Vegas and look forward to continuing to integrate autonomous technologies into the Uber network to grow our business by providing customers with additional reliable, affordable and effortless transportation and delivery options.”