Lyft and Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) are teaming up to test systems for self-driving cars.
Ford says that it one day plans for its self-driving cars to work with Lyft. To prepare for this future, the company is sending out drivers that will pick up and transport customers to their destinations.
The goal of this new test is to make sure that the technology platforms at Lyft and Ford are properly working together. This means that when a customers sends of a ride, a Ford representative may be who picks them up.
If Ford can work with Lyft’s system while using drivers, then it will put it one step closer to incorporating self-driving cars into the service. The current tests is designed so that customers won’t know the difference between a ride from Ford and one of Lyft’s drivers.
As it stands right now, Ford says that it isn’t ready to start sending out self-driving cars for Lyft. However, this is the end goal. The company says that this will allow it to deploy autonomous vehicles to work alongside drivers during times when the ride-sharing service is under heavy demand.
“We expect that our partnership with Lyft will accelerate our efforts to build a profitable and viable self-driving vehicle business,” Sherif Marakby, Ford Vice Presidentof Autonomous Vehicles and Electrification, said in a Medium post. “With Lyft’s network and respected brand experience, we expect our ability to scale self-driving vehicles will play a critical role in safely bringing this technology — and its many benefits — to mainstream consumers.”
As of this writing, William White did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.