DETROIT (Reuters) – Ford Motor Co (F.N) will start testing its newest self-driving automobile know-how subsequent 12 months in a minimum of one metropolis however has not modified its plan to start business manufacturing till 2021, the corporate mentioned.
The automaker mentioned on Thursday that it could check self-driving prototypes in varied pilot packages with companions similar to Lyft, the experience companies firm through which rival Basic Motors Co (GM.N) owns a minority stake, and Domino’s Pizza Inc (DPZ.N). Nevertheless, Ford has nonetheless not determined whether or not to function its personal on-demand transportation service.
In a weblog publish, Jim Farley, president of world markets, mentioned Ford additionally would check new enterprise fashions that contain its self-driving automobiles, together with the motion of individuals and items.
GM unveiled plans final week to introduce its personal on-demand ride-sharing service in a number of U.S. cities in 2019, utilizing self-driving variations of the battery-powered Chevrolet Bolt.
Ford is shifting manufacturing of a future battery electrical automobile to Mexico to unencumber capability at its Flat Rock, Michigan, plant to construct the self-driving automobiles in 2021, based on spokesman Alan Corridor.
The electrical automobile, whose more-advanced battery system will allow a driving vary of greater than 300 miles, will go into manufacturing in 2020 at Ford’s Cuatitlan plant, which suppliers say may also construct a brand new hybrid crossover automobile across the identical time.
On the Flat Rock plant, Ford is boosting funding to $900 million from $700 million and including 850 jobs.
Each the 2020 electrical and the 2021 self-driving automobiles will draw on the next-generation Ford Focus for a few of their underbody construction and elements whereas utilizing completely different propulsion programs.
Not like the total electrical automobile from Cuatitlan, the self-driving automobile from Flat Rock will use a hybrid system with a gasoline engine and an electrical motor, Corridor mentioned.
Reporting by Paul Lienert in Detroit; Enhancing by Lisa Von Ahn
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