Cruise, the autonomous car company backed by General Motors and Honda, will launch its first international robotic taxi service in Dubai in 2023. The news was announced Monday by the Crown Prince of Dubai, Hamdan bin Mohammed.
As part of its ride-hailing service, Cruise will use its fully autonomous Origin vehicles, which it first unveiled in 2019. The company does not intend to use its Chevy Bolt electric vehicles it currently uses as part of its test fleet in San Francisco.
The Origin is designed as a shared vehicle and when it goes into production it will not have controls typical of human driving, such as a steering wheel or pedals. Cruise said the goal is to scale up to at least 4,000 vehicles in Dubai by the year 2030.
Cruise still plans for San Francisco to become the first market for its commercial robotic taxi service. The company planned to launch a commercial service in its hometown in 2019, but has failed to do so and has yet to announce a new date.
The Cruise Origin will go into production at GM’s Detroit-Hamtramck plant from 2022. In light of the negative effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on shared rides, Cruise recently unveiled a new set of safety protocols designed to keep people socially at a distance while traveling. and the vehicle is cleaned between rates.
Cruise is one of the best-capitalized autonomous car companies in the world. Over the past three years, the company has raised more than $ 7.4 billion from a number of investors including SoftBank, Honda, GM, T. Rowe Price Group and Microsoft. Cruise is currently valued at $ 19 billion.
Dubai might be a perfect match for Cruise’s fully autonomous vehicles. The kingdom aims to have 20 percent of its journeys in autonomous vehicles by 2030. Dubai has also invited a number of urban air mobility companies, such as Volocopter, to test their electric planes.