U.S.-based ride-hailing company Uber Technologies Inc. considers partnering with South Korea’s biggest automaker Hyundai Motor Co. to develop driverless car-sharing services.
According to industry sources on Tuesday, autonomous driving researchers at Uber will visit Hyundai Motor’s Namyang R&D Center in Hwaseong, Gyeonggi Province on Wednesday and Thursday to learn Hyundai’s autonomous driving technologies and seek ways to join hands with Hyundai to develop self-driving ride-sharing services.
Uber, planning to launch its separate driverless taxi service by 2020, has been looking for partners with advanced self-driving technologies that could allow fully autonomous car driving in the near future. Auto industry observers note Hyundai has proved that it has made big strides in the self-driving technology with its new Genesis sedans. The EQ900 that was released last year and the G80 scheduled to hit the market this month are partially equipped with autonomous car technologies such as autonomous emergency braking (AEB) system and highway driving assist (HAD) system. Hyundai Motor also became the first company in Korea to receive a license from the government to test its self-driving Genesis premium sedan on real roads in March this year. The auto industry sees that fully autonomous cars would be able to hit the road in just a few years.
Uber, found in 2010, is a car-sharing giant that has more than one million members and is operating in more than 300 cities in 58 countries worldwide, and partnering with Uber is expected to translate into huge opportunity for Hyundai as it would lead to massive fleet sales of its cars.
Speculations are already looming that Uber may purchase the new G80 models scheduled to make a debut in 2019 as the car is likely to come out with a fully autonomous driving technology.
By Noh Won-myung
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business News Korea & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]