Lyft has announced that it’s unleashing 30 autonomous vehicles in Las Vegas.
The ride-hailing company piloted its autonomous ride-sharing vehicles late last year in Boston and gave rides to people attending the Computer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas back in January.
Unlike its trial at CES, though, the 30 vehicles part of this expansion is open to the public – enabling you to hail them like you would any other car through its app.
The company is aiming to put the cars on the road in July or August, and will do so with Aptiv (formally known as Delphi), one of the world’s largest auto suppliers.
The vehicles Lyft used during CES were BMWs powered by autonomous technology developed by Aptiv. They were equipped with nine LiDARs, 10 radars, a trifocal camera, vehicle-to-infrastructure data about stop lights and differential GPS.
Lyft announced last year that it will operate an open self-driving platform through which any company could deploy their own autonomous cars, in a bid to get a car on the road before Uber.
During CES, self-driving cars gave more than 400 rides and earned an average customer rating of 4.99 out of five stars, according to Aptiv.
Now anyone can hail a self-driving car using the Lyft app, just like they would for any other Lyft ride. However, passengers will have to opt into the autonomous-car ride, and will only be able to travel to certain “high-demand locations,” according to Aptiv. Human safety drivers will be onboard at all times.
Lyft’s ultimate goal is to use self-driving cars for the vast majority of its ride. However, to do that, it will not only have to perfect a complex technology but also convince members of the public to use it. Recent studies that won’t be easy, but offering demonstration rides to the public is probably a good place to start.
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