Lyft partnering with Magna

16 March, 2018, 02:10 | Author: Carmen Reese
  • Lyft wants to make a turnkey autonomous car brain

"Together with Magna, we will accelerate the introduction of self-driving vehicles by sharing our technology with automotive OEMs worldwide", said Lyft CEO Logan Green.

In addition to the partnership, Magna is investing $200 million in Lyft for an equity stake in the company. Intellectual property created as part of the deal will be jointly shared between the two companies, while Lyft will have access to Magna's existing technology for its self-driving cars.

Raj Kapoor, Lyft's chief strategy officer, says Lyft needs auto industry expertise to manufacture autonomous vehicle components and eventually build the vehicles.

Waymo, the self-driving vehicle unit of Google parent Alphabet, past year made an agreement with Lyft to test self-driving auto technology.

Lyft offers software and its ride-hailing network. Apple is among companies with permits to test self-driving cars in California.

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Experts state that the partnership between Magna and Lyft will democratize the autonomous vehicle technology by helping automobiles to operate on Lyft's ridesharing network without using its proprietary system. Swamy Kotagiri, a chief technology officer for Magna International, has conveyed that this unique association is a blend of vast industry experience and a new mobility prototype for offering self-driving systems.

When self-driving cars will actually arrive is an open question.

Lyft has made an array of alliances, including with investors Ford and General Motors, since opening its self-driving initiative to other companies. Earlier in January this year, the ride-sharing firm carried out a test program in Las Vegas with self-driving BMW sedans by using self-driving technology of Aptiv, a United Kingdom based automotive parts tech firm.

Lyft will lead the co-development of the self-driving system at its Palo Alto-based self-driving engineering center.


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