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Motional, the autonomous driving joint venture between Hyundai Motor Group and Aptiv, has reached an agreement with Uber Technologies to supply it with fully driverless Ioniq 5-based electric robotaxis.
The two parties signed a 10-year, multi-market agreement that will see Uber use Motional’s advanced driverless technology and vehicles across its network of millions of customers. Needless to say, the deal will enable Motional to scale its business significantly.
At launch, the service will be deployed in cities across the United States, with Uber expected to offer the first trips in self-driving Motional Hyundai vehicles starting later this year. The companies will share details on the cities and services in the future.
“This agreement will be instrumental to the wide scale adoption of robotaxis. Motional now has unparalleled access to millions of riders and a roadmap to scale significantly over the next ten years. We’re proud to partner with Uber to bring both driverless ride-hail and deliveries to life in cities throughout the U.S.”
Karl Iagnemma, President and CEO of Motional
As part of the commercial partnership, Uber will share targeted insights to efficiently allocate and position Motional’s vehicles. Using self-driving Ioniq 5 EVs will allow Uber to leverage those insights to optimize operations, including reducing vehicle downtime and unnecessary miles traveled.
As a result, Uber will be able to maximize the time spent in revenue-generating service while also providing a better experience for its customers, thanks to reduced wait times and lower fares.
This is not the first collaboration between Motional and Uber; Ioniq 5 robotaxis have been delivering food for Uber Eats customers in Santa Monica, California, since May 2022. The pilot’s success led the two companies to expand delivery operations to service more restaurants, with the new agreement also enabling further expansion of Motional’s AVs for delivery with Uber Eats.
Obviously, offering rides to people in Motional’s Ioniq 5 robotaxis without a driver is a bigger deal than delivering food. Motional says it’s now positioned to become the first AV company to offer both delivery and ride-hail services within a major network like Uber.
Additionally, deploying Motional’s fully electric, zero tailpipe-emissions Ioniq 5 robotaxis on the Uber network will have a positive contribution to the ride-sharing company’s commitment to being a zero-emissions platform by 2030 in the United States.